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INEOS remains committed to expansion of the Rafnes cracker and operations in Grenland

Revised Skanled plan will provide more ethane in Grenland and allow first phase expansion of INEOS cracker.

Longer-term expansion will depend on further ethane developments in Norway.

INEOS has today welcomed the revised plans for Norway’s Skanled project, to secure long-term deliveries of natural gas into the Grenland area of Norway via a spur from a pipeline linking Western Norway with Sweden and Denmark. 

The company confirms that it remains committed to its expansion of the Rafnes cracker and the operations in Grenland as a means of adding significant value to Norwegian ethane, to create wealth and prosperity in Norway. It continues to provide its full support to the Skanled project and works towards its successful delivery, expected in 2012. 

“This is an important outcome for Norway, Grenland and INEOS”, said Tom Crotty CEO INEOS Olefins & Polymers Europe. “We are pleased that the Skanled group have found a way forward to progress the project, to provide long-term gas supplies to Grenland.“

”Our long-term plan remains the expansion of the cracker at Rafnes, to produce a further 100,000 tonnes of ethylene in Norway, based on a feedstock combination of LPG and ethane. We are committed to our Norwegian facilities and the expansion of our operations. In particular, a first phase expansion of our ethylene cracker is planned at the appropriate time, when sufficient Norwegian ethane is available”.

The Skanled project is complex and a number of challenges remain to be overcome including government approvals in Norway, Sweden and Denmark, in addition to the necessary agreement of gas purchase and sales contracts. Longer-term expansion at Rafnes will depend on the outcome of these discussions and further ethane developments in Norway.

INEOS now looks forward to the successful completion of the next phase of the programme as Skanled group submits its plan for installation and operation (PIO) to the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy by 1 April.

For further information contact:
Richard Longden – INEOS - Tel: +44 (0) 7710 371998

www.ineos.com 

Note to editors:

INEOS acquired its sites in the Grenland region following acquisitions from Borealis AS in September 2007 and chlor-alkali, PVC and compounds businesses from Norsk Hydro in February 2008. The acquisition of Borealis AS and Norsk Hydro ASA’s polymers business (Kerling) and completed the total purchase of the Noretyl cracker, previously a 50:50 Joint Venture between Norsk Hydro and Borealis AS.

The Noretyl ethylene cracker was commissioned in 1977 and expanded by 100,000 t/a in 2005, it currently has a capacity of 557,000 t/a in addition to a propylene capacity of 80,000 t/a. It also supplies nearby Bamble site as well as VCM operations at Rafnes.

Norway is Europe's second biggest gas supplier after Russia, meeting about 16 percent of European Union demand.It could feed gas into the Danish system or be extended across the Baltic Sea to central Europe

The Skanled companies include:

Owners: Skagerak Energi, E.ON Ruhrgas, PGNiG, Energinet.dk, Østfold Energi, Gøteborg Energi, Agder Energi, Swedegas and Preem Petroleum

Users: INEOS, Energinet.dk, E.ON Ruhrgas, Gøteborg Energi, Perstorp, PGNiG, Preem Petroleum, SIGC (Kemira, Höganäs, Stora Enso, Lunds Energikoncernen, Eka Chemicals, Trelleborg and Pilkington), Skagerak Energi, StatoilHydro and Yara