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China’s Sinopec opens lube blending plant in Singapore

Sinopec, China’s largest integrated energy and chemical group, opened its new S$134 million (US$106 million) lube blending plant in Tuas, in the southwestern part of Singapore, its first outside China.
The company said the new facility will help it better serve customers in Southeast Asia, Australia and New Zealand.
“In recent years, the demand for our products has been growing at above 50% a year globally, although it is from a low base. But with the opening of the plant, an efficient distribution system and speedy product delivery, we will enjoy faster growth,” Pei Wenjun, general manager of Sinopec Lubricant (Singapore), said.
Sinopec said its Singapore plant has an initial production capacity of 100,000 tons per year. The plant will employ about 150 workers at full capacity.
The company said it plans to expand its operations in Asia-Pacific, with the Singapore plant as its regional hub. It picked Singapore because of the city-state’s status as the third largest oil industry hub in the world, its pro-business environment, as well as the ease in procuring lubricating base oils and additives, the essential ingredients in producing finished lubricants.
Sinopec said this is part of its globalization plan, which could see the setting up of more lube blending plants overseas.
“The Asia-Pacific region is the largest and fastest-growing lubricants market, accounting for almost 42% of the global lubricants market in 2012,” said Yeoh Keat Chuan, managing director of Singapore’s Economic Development Board.
Lubricants consumption is expected to reach 17 million tons by 2017, he said.