SOCAR to draw state investments to implement big project in Azerbaijan

Oil&Gas Materials 9 March 2012 15:46 (UTC +04:00)

Azerbaijan, Baku, March 9 / Trend E. Ismayilov /

SOCAR hopes for state investments within the establishment of a new complex for oil and gas processing and petrochemical production, SOCAR senior representative told Trend today.

He said that the initial cost of the project of establishing a new processing complex is estimated at $15 billion.

According to the PriceWaterhouseCoopers, which deals with the financial issues of this project, the process of financing the construction project of the new complex is as follows: 30 percent - at the expense of own funds and the remaining 70 percent of funds drawn from banks and international financial institutions.

"We mainly hope for public investments while implementing this project, that is, while paying for the share at own expense [30 percent]," SOCAR representative said.

Taking into account the project scale, the financing process from state funds can be ensured by fully using the funds of the State Oil Fund of Azerbaijan (SOFAZ). The state support can be implemented by increasing SOCAR's authorized capital through state investments, he said.

This project is more estimated as social, rather than commercial. The need for new technologies in processing and taking the major processing plants outside of Baku is part of major state programs.

"So we try to implement this project at the expense of public funds," SOCAR representative said.

SOCAR intends to fully put into operation a new complex for oil and gas processing and petrochemical production in Azerbaijan by late 2020, SOCAR vice-president for strategic development Tofig Gahramanov said earlier.

"The gas processing plant and the first units of a petrochemical plant will be put into operation in 2017-2018," he said. "The refinery will be commissioned later."

The payback of the project is 6-7 years.

The gas-processing plant will initially produce 10 billion cubic meters with the possibility of increasing to 15 billion cubic meters. SOCAR's own gas, the associated gas from the Azeri-Chirag-Guneshli block and other fields, will be used in the processing process.
The gases (ethane, propane, butane) obtained as result of processing will be used as feedstock for the petrochemical plant. Methane will be used for sale to consumers.

The capacity of a refinery is 10 million tons per year. Gahramanov said that the production capacity of the petrochemical plant will initially hit 1.2-1.3 million tons a year.

The feasibility study was prepared by world leaders in the field of design - Foster Wheeler, Technip Benelux and UOP.