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India IOC approves styrene monomer plant for Panipat
7/1/2021 12:00:00 AM

Indian state-controlled refiner IOC's board of directors has given stage one approval to build the country's first styrene monomer (SM) plant at its Panipat refinery and petrochemical complex.

This 387,000 t/yr SM plant is expected to be commissioned by the 2026-27 fiscal year ending 31 March, with it part of the north Indian refinery's expansion project boosting its crude processing capacity from 300,000 b/d to 500,000 b/d. The new SM plant will consume the increased ethylene from the expansion and IOC's existing 120,000 t/yr benzene production.
SM is used to produce plastic and resins such as polystyrene, acrylonitrile butadiene styrene, unsaturated polyester resins, synthetics rubbers, with it also used in painting and coating applications.
India currently relies completely on SM imports from the Middle East and southeast Asia, with it adding South Korea, Taiwan, China and the US as suppliers in recent years.
India's reliance on SM imports have been growing about 10pc/yr during 2011-18, with imports of 486,000t in 2011 rising to 852,00t in 2019. The growth slowed to 2pc in 2019 because of changes in India's economy. The negative growth of almost 17pc last year, with imports falling to 710,000t, was an anomaly because of the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Source: Argus