It was recently announced that Motiva, a 100%-owned subsidiary of Saudi Aramco, signed an agreement to acquire full ownership interest in Flint Hills Resources Port Arthur.
Commenting on the acquisition, Patrick Kirby, Wood Mackenzie Principal Analyst, said: “This marks the entry of Motiva into the chemical industry. Port Arthur, LLC includes a 635 ktpa mixed feedstock steam cracker, a cyclohexane plant and associated storage and pipeline infrastructure. The chemical assets are located adjacent to the 635 kbpd Port Arthur refinery, which is the largest in the US. The refinery is fully owned and operated by Motiva, following Shell’s exit in 2017.
“The steam cracker, which can handle a range of feedstocks – including ethane and those form the refinery – forms an integral part of the transaction. The steam cracker primarily produces ethylene and propylene for the merchant market.
“It remains unclear as to what Motiva has planned post-acquisition, however some options could include strengthening refinery-chemicals integration, expansion of the asset capacity or potentially longer-term derivative plant development. The company has also expressed plans for further chemical developments at Port Arthur, including a world-scale steam cracker and aromatics facility.”
The value of the transaction was not disclosed but it is expected to close in Q4 2019, subject to satisfaction of closing conditions.