BASF and PETRONAS break ground on highly reactive polyisobutene plant in Malaysia

Deputy Minister of the Malaysian Ministry of International Trade and Industry, Dato’ Lee Chee Leong, officiated the ground-breaking ceremony for the highly reactive polyisobutene (HR-PIB) production plant at the BASF PETRONAS Chemicals Sdn Bhd integrated site in Gebeng, Kuantan, Malaysia, on March 17.

The plant, which is the latest investment by the BASF and PETRONAS Chemicals Group Berhad’s joint venture, will be the first of its kind in Southeast Asia, with a total annual capacity of 50,000 metric tonnes of HR-PIB. The plant is expected to start production in the fourth quarter of 2017.

HR-PIB is an important intermediate product for the manufacturing of high performance fuel and lubricant additives.

Located within one of BASF’s two Verbund (integrated) sites in Asia Pacific, the new HR-PIB plant is a synergistic opportunity for backward integration that allows for greater sustainable use of raw materials, energy and technology know-how.

In addition to this new plant, BASF also operates production facilities for HR-PIB at its Verbund sites in Ludwigshafen, Germany and Antwerp, Belgium, and within a joint venture with Sinopec YPC in Nanjing, China.