Qatar cracker

TotalFinaElf SA has said that its Atofina division had agreed with Chevron Phillips Chemical and two Qatari firms to build what could become the world’s largest ethane cracker in Qatar. The refinery is expected to come on-stream in the second half of 2006, with an initial capacity of one million tonnes per year. “Plans call for increasing capacity to 1.5 million tonnes per year in the second phase, making the facility the largest of its kind in the world,â€? TotalFinaElf said in a statement. The two local firms in the project are Qatar Petrochemical Co., in which TotalFinaElf has a 10 percent stake, and state-owned Qatar Petroleum. TotalFinaElf said the final contract for the ethane cracker train would be signed by the end of the year. It did not disclose the financial details of the project. Initially, the cracker would produce feedstock for a new 400,000 tonne per year polyethylene plant in the industrial city of Messaied in SE Qatar, TotalFinaElf added.

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