Saudi Aramco announced its largest-ever investment in South Korea for a project to develop a world-class integrated petrochemical steam cracking facility through its subsidiary S-Oil.
The company seeks to expand its business in the petrochemical sector, in line with its strategy to maximize the value chain in converting liquids into chemicals.
The project, known as Shaheen, with a value of 26 billion Saudi riyals ($7 billion), aims to use innovative technology for the first time to convert crude oil into raw materials for petrochemicals.
This will mark the first commercialization of thermal cracking technology from Saudi Aramco and Lumos Technologies.
The project will increase chemical production and reduce operating costs. This project follows a previous investment of $4 billion in the first phase of the petrochemical expansion project that was completed in 2018.
The upcoming project is located at the current site of the (S-Oil) complex in Ulsan, and it is planned that the project will have the capacity to produce up to 3.2 million tons of petrochemicals annually.
The project will include a facility to produce high-value polymers. The project is expected to start in 2023 and be completed by 2026.
The steam cracking facility is expected to process by-products from ore processing, including naphtha and off-gas, into ethylene production.
The project is also expected to produce propylene, butadiene and other basic chemicals.
The upcoming steam cracker will use mixed feedstock, outperforming naphtha-based cracking facilities in terms of overall efficiency and performance.
Upon completion of the project, the volume of S-Oil’s chemical production could double to approximately 25%, which demonstrates the impact of this advanced technology and Saudi Aramco’s strategy to convert crude oil into chemicals.
Saudi Aramco aims to expand its liquid-to-chemical capacity by 4 million barrels per day.
Saudi Aramco is the majority shareholder in (S-Oil), and owns more than 63% of the shares of the complex through Aramco Overseas B. in. Affiliated.