EghtesadOnline: The first phase of Ibn Sina Petrochemical Company in Mahshahr, Khuzestan Province, will be launched in the near future to complete the butane value chain, managing director of the company said.
“The first phase, which is a butane unit, will be operational soon,” Makan Shamlou was quoted as saying by the National Petrochemical Company news website Nipna. He did not elaborate.
Using butane as feedstock the plant will produce three important products including maleic anhydride, isobutane and normal butane.
An organic compound, maleic anhydride is a colorless or white solid with an acrid odor. It is used in the production of unsaturated polyester resin as well as in the manufacture of coatings, pharmaceutics, agricultural products, surfactants, and as an additive of plastics.
“A large part of the domestic need for unsaturated polyesters is met by importing maleic anhydride,” Shamlou said. When Ibn Sina Petrochemical Company is fully operational it will end import of this product, he added.
The company is being built on three hectares in Petrochemical Special Economic Zone in Bandar Imam Khomeini (BIK) in the southwest. The plant’s location will allow easy access to BIK port and international sea lanes.
BIK is the closest port in south Iran to neighboring countries. Furthermore, given easy access of the petrochemical zone to the main railroad in Iran, the plant can export to companies in Turkey and Central Asia.
Global maleic anhydride capacity is expected to grow from 3.20 million tons per annum in 2018 to 3.43 million tons per year by 2023.
The Middle East will lead with the largest capacity additions from the upcoming plants of maleic anhydride by 2023. For the upcoming plants, the region is expected to add 0.222 million tons per year.
With the additions, Iran aims to represent around 59% of global capacity growth by adding 0.13 million tons per year.
The UAE and Russia are second in terms of capacity additions in the global maleic anhydride industry. Jointly the two will add 0.09 million tons a year from the two projects.
India is the only other country with an expansion project to increase maleic anhydride capacity by 0.002 million tons per year.