Saudi state petchems giant SABIC and Japan’s Mitsubishi Rayon Company have invited bids to build two acrylics plants at Jubail. The companies have tendered for engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contracts for a 250,000 tons/year methyl methacrylate (MMA) plant and linked 40,000 t/y polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) plant. Bids are due by end-December with a view to 2Q14 award. Construction is estimated to cost $500mn.

Spain’s Tecnicas Reunidas was awarded the front-end engineering design (FEED) contract for the MMA/PMMA project in January 2012. The MMA unit is set to be the largest ever and will incorporate MRC’s proprietary Alpha technology, which uses methanol, ethylene and carbon monoxide as feedstock. At the launch of the joint venture in 2011 to build the plants, a SABIC official described Alpha as a “breakthrough technology.” (CONTINUED - 276 WORDS)