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Uzbekistan could complete Ustyurt complex by Q3 2015

10 December 2014

The Uz-Kor Gas Chemical joint venture between Uzbekistan and South Korea plans to finish building the $3.9 billion Ustyurt gas chemical complex by the autumn of next year, a source in the management of Uzbek state oil and gas company Uzbekneftegaz told Interfax. 

The country is aiming to significantly expand its gas production and the amount OF GAS available for export. 

"We'll make every effort to finish the construction by August next year," the source said. Most of the equipment is in place and communications are being installed. A purpose-built substation should start supplying electricity to the complex this month.

Work on the plant began in 2011. It will process 4.5 billion cubic metres per year of gas and produce up to 4 bcm/y of commercial gas, as well as 387,000 tons per year of polyethylene, 83,000 tpa of polypropylene and about 102,000 tpa of pyrolysis gas.

Uzbekistan has around 10 bcm/y available for export. Domestic gas is sold at an artificially low rate. 

Uzbekneftegaz and a Korean consortium consisting of Kogas, Honam Petrochemical and STX Energy created the Uz-Kor Gas Chemical JV on an equal footing in order to build the Ustyurt complex, to be funded by the partners themselves and $2.54 billion in Asian, European and Uzbek bank loans.

The Surgil, Vostochny Berdakh-Uchsay and Severny Berdakh fields will serve as the resource base for the complex. The largest of them - Surgil - contains about 120 bcm of gas.

This will be Uzbekistan's second gas chemical complex. The first - at Shurtan, which came onstream in 2001 - has the capacity to produce 150 types of high-, medium- and low-pressure polyethylene, with a total capacity of 125,000 tpa. 

The complex also produces 137,000 tpa of liquefied gas, 130,000 tpa of light condensate, 4.2 bcm/y of commercial gas and 4,000 tpa of sulphur.

UzIndoramaGazChemical, a 50/50 JV set up by Uzbekistan and Singapore's Indorama in 2012, will build a complex to produce 500,000 tpa of polyethylene at an estimated cost of $2.5 billion at the Mubarek processing plant.