| BANGKOK, March 11
BANGKOK, March 11 Thailand's PTT Global Chemical
Pcl will bank on recent alliances with state-owned
Chinese and Indonesian firms to boost petrochemical exports and
offset weakness in domestic demand caused by political unrest,
its CEO said on Tuesday.
Thailand's largest petrochemicals maker, which is 49 percent
owned by the country's top energy firm PTT Pcl, signed
separate deals in 2013 with Indonesian oil and gas firm
Pertamina and China's Sinochem Group to jointly
develop its petrochemical business in the two countries.
"Domestic demand for plastic pellets may fall slightly, but
we continue to see demand in foreign markets especially in
Indonesia and China, where we have penetrated and sell more
products," President and CEO Bowon Vongsinudom told Reuters.
PTT Global, one of the world's top-10 ethylene makers,
exports about 30-40 percent of its petrochemical production,
mainly to China, Indonesia and other Southeast Asian countries.
Bowon did not say by how much the company will boost its
The CEO has previously said prolonged political problems in
Thailand could hurt its business in 2014. On Tuesday, PTT Pcl
warned the unrest is dragging on the country's economic growth
and could hit the company's target for revenue growth this year
prompting it to cut costs.
PTT Global produces ethylene and propylene, together called
olefins, which are petrochemicals used to make plastic pellets,
especially for the packaging industry.
PTT Global has an olefins and aromatic petrochemical
capacity of 8.72 million tonnes per year, and a crude oil
refining capacity of 280,000 barrels per day.
Olefins contributed 60 percent of its core earnings in 2013,
with 21 percent coming from aromatics and the rest from the
refinery, green chemicals and other products.
"The upcycle in the olefins business will continue until
next year. This is very positive for us," Bowon said.
In Indonesia, PTT Global has also joined with Pertamina to
build a petrochemical complex with an estimated cost of $4-$5
billion and the company aimed to choose the location of a new
olefins cracker by the middle of this year, Bowon said.
In China, it is studying plans to invest in high value-added
olefins derivatives such as polyurethane for coatings used in
the auto industry.
The company, which aimed to invest $790 million this year as
part of its five-year capital expenditure of $4.5 billion, is
also studying the possibility of investing in new a olefins
project in the United States using shale gas as feedstock, Bowon
Shares of PTT Global, which has a market value of $10.2
billion, closed up 1.4 percent on Tuesday, outperforming a 1.1
percent gain on the broad index.
($1 = 32.32 Baht)
(Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman)