SABIC, Saudi Aramco and PKN Orlen have signed a joint development agreement to assess the technical and economic feasibility of a petrochemical project in the Polish city of Gdansk. The project would include a steam cracker and downstream plants.
The move is a next step from the Memorandum of Understanding the three partners signed in January to explore potential project opportunities in central and eastern Europe, including building a new world-scale cracker and chemical plants in Poland, along with expanding several of PKN Orlen’s existing assets.
The three companies also have finalized two other transactions. One will see Aramco taking a 30% stake in PKN Orlen’s 210,000 bbl/day refinery in Gdansk – the Polish group will retain a 70% share. The second relates to Aramco taking 50% in an aviation fuel marketing joint venture with BP Europa, which operates at seven airports in Poland.
Aramco and PKN Orlen have also entered into a deal that will see the Saudi energy giant supply roughly 45% of the Polish group’s crude oil needs.
“These transactions are of strategic importance in further strengthening energy supplies, not only in Poland but for the entire region. This creates new growth opportunities to allow us to continue to expand in prospective and high-margin products,” said PKN Orlen president Daniel Obajtek.
Mohammed Al Qahtani, Aramco senior vice president of downstream, added: “These investments are part of our efforts towards cementing Aramco’s presence in a key European market and provide a unique opportunity to develop new liquids-to-chemicals pathways, with hopes of expanding our global downstream footprint and supporting the diversification of our portfolio.” Aramco is seeking to grow its liquids-to-chemicals capacity to up to 4 million bbl/d.