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Oct 29, 2007 14:24 EEST
October 29 (SeeNews) - Romania's Rompetrol Petrochemicals, part of Romanian second-largest oil group Rompetrol on Monday restarted its unit for production of high density polyethylene (HDPE) with an installed capacity of 60,000 tonnes, following an investment of $14.5 million (10.07 million euro).
The HDPE unit has been on hold since 1996 as a result of lack of feedstock ethylene.
"Starting up the HDPE equipment marks yet another stage in the development plan announced two years ago and which brings Rompetrol Petrochemicals among the significant players in Central and Eastern Europe", The Rompetrol Group refining vice-president Cosmin Cocean said in a statement.
In the next two years, investments in petrochemicals will "go up to at least $170 million", Rompetrol Petrochemicals said in the statement.
"Amongst the most important is restarting the pyrolysis installation, which has the capacity to produce 200,000 tons of ethylene and 100,000 tons of propylene yearly," it said.
Investments made by Rompetrol Petrochemicals since 2003 totalled $66 million and were aimed at both modernising production installations, including restarting some of them, and acquisition of licenses intended for manufacturing new products, gas transport, pipes and extra thin foil, the company said.
In April 2006, Rompetrol Petrochemicals entered in a 14-year long trade partnership with Dow Chemicals of the U.S., the biggest polyethylene producer worldwide. Within this period, Rompetrol Petrochemicals will supply HDPE and LDPE (low density polyethylene), taking advantage of technical support, raw materials and technical specifications for polymers, and ethylene supplies, until the pyrolysis installation is restarted.
Rompetrol Petrochemicals posted a first-half turnover of 297 million lei ($128.16 million/89.0 million euro), up 50% compared to the same period last year. The company forecasts a turnover of $284.4 million this year, up 85% versus 2006.
(1 euro = 3.3375 Romanian lei)
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