BASF-Sinopec joint venture completes first phase of expansion

BASF-YPC, the 50:50 petrochemical joint venture of BASF and Sinopec, said that operations have begun at the first production facilities at its $1.4bn expansion project in Nanjing, China.

The project includes the expansion of an existing steam cracker from 600,000t/year of ethylene to 740,000t/year, the expansion of three existing plants, and the construction of ten new plants.

The expanded steam cracker facility, the butadiene extraction plant and the non-ionic surfactants plant included in the project are now operational.

The bulk of the remaining plants are expected to come online by the end of 2011.

BASF and Sinopec also signed a memorandum of understanding to construct a new acrylic acid facility with a capacity of 160,000t/year, a new butyl acrylate plant, a new hydrogen peroxide propylene oxide facility, and capacity increases at the 2-propyl-heptanol, styrene monomer and non-ionic surfactants plants.