Saudi petchems producer Sipchem has begun commercial operation of the Gulf’s first ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) and low density polyethylene (LDPE) plant in Jubail. Sipchem says the plant will produce 200,000 tons/year of EVA and LDPE, using ethylene feedstock from Sabic affiliate Kemya and vinyl acetate monomer from Sipchem’s International Vinyl Acetate affiliate. Sipchem estimates the project cost at SR3bn ($800mn).

The plant is owned by Sipchem with 75% and Korea’s Hanwha Chemical with 25%. The plant incorporates ExxonMobil EVA and LDPE technology. Sipchem and Hanwha will market the products globally, with EVA being used in making adhesives and LDPE a variety of packaging films and materials. LDPE from the plant will also supply Gulf Advanced Cable, another Sipchem affiliate, which operates a cable insulation polymers plant in Jubail. (CONTINUED - 275 WORDS)