BEIJING, April 28 Sinopec Corp has
held up a $3.1 billion ethylene plant in east China's Qingdao,
after a fatal pipeline blast last year threw into question
whether the city is environmentally viable for the petrochemical
complex, a company source said on Monday.
The explosion last November in the bustling coastal city of
Qingdao killed 62 and exposed the danger of sprawling urban
development that often conflicts with industrial planning by
engulfing oil and gas infrastructure.
"It (the project) has been put on hold for now," said the
"Sinopec is waiting for the government's final word on it,"
the source said.
The delay on the project also comes amid concern about
demand growth in China's petrochemical sector and new
competition from U.S. shale gas crackers.
Sinopec spokesman Lu Dapeng, when asked about the status of
the Qingdao project, said: "There is no official verdict yet on
But Lu added that there is no timeline for when construction
will start on the plant, which received environmental clearance
Huangdao, part of Qingdao municipality, already hosts a
200,000-barrel-per-day Sinopec refinery and a
700,000-tonnes-per-year paraxylene plant built by Korean and
Huangdao is also the site of one of China's first strategic
Sinopec's Qingdao ethylene plant was to be its first
designed to use natural gas and LPG as a
(Reporting by Chen Aizhu; Editing by Tom Hogue)