Sasol and Ineos Finalize HDPE Joint Venture Plans

10.06.2014 -

Sasol Chemicals North America and Ineos Olefins & Polymers USA have  finalized their plans, first announced in July 2013, to jointly build a production facility for HDPE in LaPorte, Texas.

The plant, expected to start up in 2016, will be operated as a 50:50 joint venture. It will have production capacity of 470,000 t/y of bimodal HDPE using Ineos' Innovene process. Each partner will supply half of the ethylene feedstock.

"This project will expand Sasol's presence in the global chemical market and complement our North American growth strategy," said Fleetwood Grobler, group executive for global chemicals.

The location offers several benefits, Grobler said, including access to US Gulf Coast infrastructure and proximity to the South African company's current and proposed ethane cracker and derivatives complex in southwest Louisiana.

Ineos will operate the plant at its Battleground complex in LaPorte.

Dennis Seith, CEO of Ineos Olefins & Polymers USA, said the investment will allow his company "to meet our customer's  needs for additional bimodal products." It also supports the company's strategy "to invest and to capture synergies on our major sites."

All details are close to being worked out and all relevant permits have been obtained, the companies said. However, because the plant will be debt financed, the investment decision is conditional on achieving financial close.