Mubadala’s Nova and Borealis form US$1.7bn US petrochemicals JV with France’s Total

Mubadala's main petrochemicals companies are forming a US joint venture with France's Total.

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Borealis and Nova Chemicals said they have signed a deal with Total’s US refining division to build a petrochemicals plant on Texas’ gulf coast.

Total said the project cost is about US$1.7 billion and it will hold a 50 per cent interest, although none of the parties disclosed how the other 50 per cent would be split.

Nova Chemicals is wholly owned by International Petroleum Invesment Co (Ipic), which is merging with the Abu Dhabi strategic investment fund Mubadala in May. Ipic also controls Borealis through a 64 per cent direct stake, plus a large stake in OMV, which owns the rest of Borealis.

Abu Dhabi plans to substantially increase its petrochemicals interests globally, as well as to expand domestic output by two and a half times, to 11.5 million tonnes per annum (mtpa), by 2025.

The Texas joint venture will be located adjacent to Total’s 400,000 barrels per day refinery and include a 1 mpta ethane steam cracker and a 625,000 tonnes a year polyethelene unit using Borealis technology, which will produce precursors for a range of plastics.

“We want to take advantage of the business-friendly environment to contribute to making American petrochemicals even greater,” said Patrick Pouyanné, the Total chief.

The companies said the project would create 1,500 jobs during peak building phase and will complete in 2020.

“We can … benefit from large scale experience gained in other projects, for example Borouge,” said the Borealis chief Mark Garrett, referring to the Adnoc venture next to the Ruwais refinery in Abu Dhabi’s western region, which doubled production last year.

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