LIMA, July 16 A Peruvian-Chilean consortium
hopes to start production at its $650 million petrochemical
plant as soon as 2012, the company said on Thursday, after
Peru's government approved the project.
Nitratos del Peru, a partnership between Peru's Brescia
group and Chile's Sigdo Koppers SK.SN, said the plant would
produce up to 710,000 tonnes of ammonia and 350,000 tonnes of
industrial grade ammonium nitrate per year.
"This project comes from the idea that Peru cannot continue
to depend on ammonium nitrate imports," company representative
Jaime Quijandria told state television.
The Andean country is trying to persuade foreign companies
to invest billions of dollars to develop petrochemical plants
that turn natural gas into ammonium nitrate used to make
explosives, fertilizers and ethylene for plastics.
The new plant will be built in Pisco, a coastal city 155
miles (250 km) south of the capital, Lima.
U.S.-based fertilizer maker CF Industries (CF.N) is
planning to build a $1 billion petrochemical complex in
southern Peru. Both are set to receive natural gas supplies
from Argentina's Pluspetrol, which heads a consortium that
extracts gas from Peru's massive Camisea field.
(Reporting by Teresa Cespedes; Writing by Dana Ford; Editing
by Christian Wiessner)