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Reliance Will Expand Jamnagar Refinery Petrochemicals Output

Reliance Industries Ltd. will expand petrochemicals production at its Jamnagar refinery in India to profit from selling products used in consumer goods that are more valuable than exported fuels.

Reliance plans to integrate refining units with additional petrochemicals operations at Jamnagar to produce more chemicals, including ethylene, polypropylene and propylene, for sale in India, K.K. Sreeramachandran, a general manager in the company’s refining business, said at a conference in Dubai.

The expansion will cost about $10 billion to $12 billion and take three to four years, he said. The company is still awarding contracts to build some segments of the plant, while construction of others have started, Sreeramachandran said.

Reliance, India’s biggest company by market value, operates two adjacent plants at Jamnagar in India’s western state of Gujarat that together make up the world’s biggest refining complex. The plants can process 1.24 million barrels of oil a day and can turn cheaper heavy grades of crude into high-value products.

The Jamnagar facility already produces 1.9 million tons of polypropylene a year, Sreeramachandran said. The refinery and chemical integration will enable the company to divert some gasoline that would normally be sold to produce the chemical paraxylene, he said. The refinery byproduct petroleum coke will be turned into synthetic gas to produce other chemicals, he said. High-value petrochemicals can be used to make consumer products like the plastics used in car dashboards or bumpers, mobile phones and computers.

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