Petronas seeks 10-12 partners for RAPID project

Posted on May 23, 2012. Filed under: Environment and Livelihoods |

(Bernama): The US$20bil Petronas Refinery and Petrochemical Integrated Development (RAPID) project in Pengerang, Johor will potentially require 10 to 12 partners, Petronas Group chief operating officer Datuk Wan Zulkiflee Wan Ariffinsaid.

He said Petronas prefers to finalise the choice of its partners in RAPID before the national oil and gas giant declares its final investment sanctioning, slated to take place in the middle of next year.

The project, which was introduced in May 2011 and officially launched a year later, has so far secured the partnership of three corporations, he said.

Wan Zulkiflee said Petronas has a stringent method of analysing its potential partner, and among the criteria for the partners would be ability to bring technology, marketing networks, operational experience and project management execution skills to RAPID.

“The project is currently undergoing the front end engineering design (FEED), and only after that would Petronas finalise the investment sanctioning,” he told reporters after the annual general meeting of Petronas Chemical Group Bhd (PCG).

He said the company has done the conceptual design, which was part of the feasibility studies, and the on-going FEED exercise will focus on the configurations of the plant, including what products are to be used and the estimated portions of capital expenditure.

“Partners does not mean only foreign partners but (we need) partners with skills and values. It can be Malaysian companies as well, but it will be very few players in the petrochemicals space other than PCG,” Wan Zulkiflee, who is also PCG chairman, said.

Asked which party is involved in negotiating with landowners in Johor, he said: “All the compensation and interaction with landowners will be done by the state government.”

At the moment the RAPID project is an entire Petronas Group project, and if the time comes for PCG to contribute, the company would have to look at the viability of the project, and if it makes sense then the chemicals producer would be involved, he added.

The RAPID project by Petronas in southern Johor is expected to meet the burgeoning demand for energy and petrochemical products especially in Asia in the next 20 years, while enhancing both Malaysia’s and the region’s petrochemical industry through attracting investments from world-class oil, gas and petrochemical firms.

The sprawling 2,000-hectare RAPID complex is also poised to trigger economic activities for Pengerang, creating thousands of jobs in view of the massive spin-offs from ancillary and supporting services.

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