Ambitious downstream programme supports UAE's industrial strategy, Adnoc says

Oil company has issued engineering design tenders for Dh18bn of projects at Ruwais chemicals hub

Adnoc has directed Dh76bn back to the local economy through its in country-value programme so far. Courtesy: Adnoc
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Abu Dhabi National Oil Company said it is committed to playing its part in the UAE government's new 'Make it in the Emirates' strategy, with Dh40bn of projects under execution, including early stage work on Dh18bn of projects at the new chemical hub planned for Ruwais.

Tenders have been issued for front-end engineering design work on the Ruwais projects, which are being brought forward through its Ta'ziz joint venture with Abu Dhabi holding company ADQ.

Other downstream and industrial ventures, as well as a new blue hydrogen and ammonia business, are also being pursued.

Blue hydrogen refers to the clean fuel produced from natural gas. Ammonia is an easily transportable way to store hydrogen.

Currently, Adnoc produces 300,000 tonnes of hydrogen a year for use in its downstream operations. The company plans to expand its manufacturing capacity for the gas to more than 500,000 tonnes. It formed a hydrogen alliance with ADQ and Mubadala Investment Company earlier this year.

"Adnoc's downstream and industry operations are a critical engine of industrial growth in the UAE," said Khaled Salmeen, executive director of Adnoc's downstream, industry, marketing & trading directorate.

"Our operations provide competitive fuels and feedstocks to enable the nation’s industries and manufacturing supply chains," he added.

'Make it in the Emirates' is the UAE's unified industrial brand identity created to encourage local and international investors to help grow the nation's industrial base. It is part of Operation 300bn, an initiative announced by the UAE's leadership on Monday to more than double the industrial sector's contribution to the economy to Dh300bn a year by 2031, up from Dh133bn currently.

Adnoc has so far directed Dh76bn back to the local economy through its in country-value programme, it said on Tuesday. National oil companies in the region have made in-country value generation a key driver to stimulate private sector growth and boost local job creation.

Projects developed through Ta'ziz in the Ruwais derivatives park will target the development of new chemicals and products.

Disinfectants, plastics, construction materials and pharmaceuticals will be part of the production at the chemicals hub, which is open to international and local investment.  It has received "significant interest from investors", with partners for anchor projects to be announced in the coming months, Adnoc said.

The company's expansion of its chemicals production through its Borouge venture with Borealis is also on track. A fifth polypropylene unit under construction is nearly 90 per cent complete, Adnoc said. It will have the capacity to produce enough material for about 600,000 kilometres of polypropylene pipes per year.