Linde and Sinopec Form Sixth Gases JV
German industrial gases and engineering firm Linde and China’s state-owned group Sinopec have formed a €145 million joint venture, the sixth between the two companies to date.
Linde and Sinopec Zhenhai Refining & Chemical Company (ZRCC) will each hold 50% in Ningbo Linde-ZRCC Gases, which will supply industrial gases to customers in the petrochemical, steel and electronics industries within the Ningbo Chemical Industrial Zone in Zhejiang province.
Under the terms of the agreement, Linde-ZRCC will acquire two existing air separation units from ZRCC and will build a third for a combined 150,000 cbm per hour of oxygen. Linde’s engineering division will design and construct the new unit.
The three plants, which will be connected to Linde’s local pipeline network, will double the German group’s air gases capacity in the Ningbo cluster.
The new unit is expected on stream in 2018 and will incorporate Linde’s intelligent solutions for remote operation, diagnostics and analytics, as well as a modular design to increase efficiency, reduce energy requirements and enhance production flexibility.
“Leveraging Linde’s gas and engineering expertise and innovations, we are able to consolidate our plant operations, which enables our cluster customers to benefit from economies of scale, improved energy efficiency, better quality management and safer and even more reliable service,” said Steven Fang, head of Linde’s regional business unit. He added that Linde’s approach is aligned with the Chinese government’s plans to develop Ningbo into a modern petrochemical hub.
Sanjiv Lamba, member of Linde’s executive board and chief operating officer, Asia-Pacific, noted that this year alone, the company has signed multiple major investment projects across China, which he said account for a significant part of Linde’s growth strategy in Asia.