EghtesadOnline: The National Petrochemical Company plans to raise its production capacity to 133 million tons per year by 2025 and to do so, it has devised 48 projects that need an investment of $30 billion, NPC’s director of planning and development said.
“Of the total amount, $8 billion have been spent on 17 projects so far and the rest will be allocated in the next four years,” Mehr News Agency quoted Hassan Abbaszadeh as saying.
Almost 60% of the petrochemical projects are in Asalouyeh and Mahshahr in southern and southwestern Iran and the rest are scattered in other regions.
Among the industries affiliated to the oil industry, the petrochemical industry is the most important one because it produces the most added value in the value chain, he added.
The official noted that currently, there are 67 petrochemical complexes operating across Iran with a total production capacity of 90 million tons per annum, adding that the figure is expected to reach 100 million tons in a year.
Abbaszadeh said the petrochemical industry produces 330 grades of petrochemical products as well as 40 types of chemicals.
Need for Polypropylene
Speaking about the shortage of polypropylene in the country, he said plans are underway to increase output.
Polypropylene, the world's second-most widely produced synthetic plastic, after polyethylene, is used in a variety of applications, including packaging and labeling, textiles, carpets, stationery, plastic parts and reusable containers, laboratory equipment, loudspeakers, automotive parts and polymer banknotes.
A petrochemical plant for converting natural gas to polypropylene is under construction in Eslamabad-e-Gharb, Kermanshah Province, and is expected to come on stream by 2024.
The project is the first of its kind in Iran’s petrochemical industry, which is to produce polypropylene from gas. When fully operational, it will produce 120,000 tons of polypropylene per year.
The construction of the gas-to-polypropylene (GTPP) plant was started earlier this year by domestic engineers.
Researchers at the Petrochemical Research and Technology Company, affiliated to NPC, have gained the technical know-how to build the plant that will cost $545 million.
PRTC is the mainstay for research and production of technology in all petrochemical fields. It ensures tech security and contributes to economic growth by exporting know-how.
Iran now has a production capacity of about 1 million tons of propylene per annum, but needs about 4 million tons annually.
Licenses have been issued for the construction of some GTPP facilities that will produce not only polypropylene but also propylene derivatives.
At present, four propylene and polypropylene production projects are underway in Mahshahr, Amirabad, Anzali and Asalouyeh.
The global polypropylene market was worth $126 billion in 2019. It is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 12% and reach $192.3 billion by 2023.
Rising demand for thermoplastic materials contributed to the growth of the polypropylene market. Due to its unique chemical properties, thermoplastic materials can be recycled and remolded without affecting its physical properties, making thermoplastic materials more useful in clothing, packaging, food and beverage sectors.