Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources Tarek El Molla chaired ECHEM’s general assembly meeting to approve the results of the work of fiscal year 2022/23.
El Molla said that maximizing opportunities for private sector participation to invest in new petrochemical projects to support the national economy comes within the main axes of the Ministry’s updated strategy for the petrochemical industry until 2040. Through this, the Ministry and the Egyptian Petrochemical Holding Company (ECHEM) have developed a map for the petrochemical industry during the coming period that determines investment priorities in accordance with the country’s needs and development plans.
El Molla stated that the new map for the Egyptian petrochemical industry aims to diversify capital and attract national and international investments to new petrochemical projects through investment partnerships with petroleum sector entities and encouraging public and private sector partnerships in petrochemicals.
The soda ash (sodium carbonate) production project being established in the new city of El Alamein is considered a real beginning for this participation. Cooperation has also taken place between the state sectors and the private sector in the silicon production project being established in El Alamein, which will provide products that will benefit different sectors and industries needed in the market.
El Molla explained that during the year, the work of the silicon production and soda ash projects was launched, where the founding assembly of the soda ash company was held, and ECHEM contributes 20% to the capital of the project.
The procedures for selecting the general contractor have begun. The investment cost is about $684 million, El Molla pointed out, adding that soda ash is used in many industries, such as glass, soap, detergents, paper, medical products, food and beverages, animal feed, fertilizers, packaging, plastics, rubber, plastics, and paints.
The assembly witnessed a presentation indicating that the Alamein Petrochemical Complex is currently being developed to produce specialized petrochemical and petroleum products, and the project is being promoted with a number of strategic investors.
ECHEM’s Chairman Ibrahim Mekki explained that the current production of petrochemicals amounted to about 4.3 million tons annually during the last fiscal year. He also reviewed the ongoing projects to expand and increase efficiency and production capacity in previously existing projects, which include expansions and increased production of the Elab factory for the production of alkyl benzene in Alexandria and the colored polyethylene production project at the Ethydco complex.
The Chairman also referred to the start of procedures for green energy projects, represented by the green ammonia production project in Damietta, in partnership with the Norwegian company SCATEC, which has a capacity of 150,000 tons annually.