Cogeneration Unit to be Built at INEOS Oxide's Site in Antwerp

INEOS Oxide and ESSENT Energie announced today, 24th January 2003, their intention to build a 120 MW Combined Heat and Power (CHP) Plant at INEOS Oxide's site in Antwerp, Belgium. The CHP plant will be built and owned by ESSENT and will be operated by INEOS Oxide. Commercial supplies of electricity, steam and demineralised water will commence early 2005, with surplus power to be fed into the Belgian electricity grid.

"We are delighted to have reached this agreement with ESSENT for their first CHP Plant in Belgium. This is an important development for the future growth of INEOS Oxide at Antwerp, with the combination of a highly competitive and reliable long term utility supply enabling us to further expand our own chemical activities, whilst supporting the growth of our Third Party partners which we currently host on our site. The presence of this state-of-the-art utilities unit will also significantly advantage INEOS Oxide's site as the preferred location in the region for new Third Party investments." said Bill Reid INEOS Oxide's CEO.

"ESSENT's investment in this CHP unit of over Euro 80 million underlines their commitment to maintaining a leading position in the European energy market and also highlights their growth expectations of the Antwerp region. The approval of this project is based on the relief measures undertaken by the Belgian Government in order to meet environmental targets. This cogeneration unit is extremely efficient on fuel consumption in comparison to separate electricity and steam producing units and consequently this project will contribute largely to the Government's target on carbon dioxide reduction associated with the Kyoto Treaty, whilst increasing the capacity of quality CHP with 800 MWe by 2012." explained Paul Nauwelaerts, INEOS Oxide Third Party Business Director.

INEOS Oxide, part of the Euro 5 billion INEOS Group of Companies, is a leading producer of intermediate and speciality chemicals, with production sites in Antwerp Belgium and Plaquemine Louisiana USA. The Antwerp site is a rapidly growing "host" site, with eight Third Party Companies owning assets at that location and taking advantage of the site's strategic coastal position at the heart of the world's second largest petrochemical zone.

ESSENT Energie are a Dutch listed utility company with annual turnover of Euro 7 billion.

For further details please contact:

Paul Nauwelaerts - Third Party Director INEOS Oxide
Phone +32 3250 9058

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