EghtesadOnline: Pardis Petrochemical Company has signed a memorandum of understanding with KBR, an American technology and services provider, to improve its processes and equipment.
The preliminary agreement was signed in Tehran on Saturday between PPC Managing Director Hossein Shahriari and Jan Egil Braendeland, KBR's president of the Oil and Gas Division, NIPNA reported.
The agreement is aimed at improving safety protocols, raising energy efficiency, reducing corrosion and reconditioning the facilities of PPC, a producer of ammonia and urea in the southern port city of Asalouyeh, Bushehr Province.
PCC describes itself as the operator of the Middle East's largest ammonia and urea complex and one of the world's top producers of the two compounds that form the building block of many products, including plastics, explosives, textiles, pesticides, fertilizers and resin products, according to Financial Tribune.
Based in Houston, Texas, KBR had previously licensed PPC's process technology of its ammonia unit, according to NIPNA.
Formerly a subsidiary of giant oilfield services firm Halliburton, KBR is an engineering, construction and services company across the hydrocarbons value chain.
Pardis is part of a cluster of petrochemical plants in Asalouyeh, home to Iran's largest gas production and refining facilities.
The company's nominal production capacity has increased to 2 million tons of ammonia and 3.25 million tons of urea annually after the completion of its third development phase at a cost of $593 million.
According to reports, PPC exports nearly 90% of its urea to customers in China, Africa, Europe and South America.
The collaboration with KBR is a marker of how the lifting of sanctions in early 2016 is helping Iranian petrochemical producers to push their development plans after years of limited ties with global companies under a strict sanctions regime.
Tehran says its new petrochemical ventures require over $70 billion in investments that should mostly come from foreign sources.
Petrochemical is Iran's most important industry after oil and gas. NPC hopes to lift nominal output capacity to more than 120 million tons per annum by 2022, the last year of Iran's Sixth Five-Year Economic Development Plan.
The country exported 16.4 million tons of petrochemicals worth over $8.5 billion in the nine months between March 21 and Dec. 21.