Riyadh, Asharq Al-Awsat- Two leading Saudi and American companies Sunday signed an estimated SR500 million joint venture agreement to build world scale ethyleneamines manufacturing facility under the name of Arabian Amines Company to be based in Jubail Industry City.
With this signing of agreement that took place at the headquarters of Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (SAGIA) between Riyadh-based Al-Zamil Group and Texas-based Huntsman Corporation the number of Saudi-US joint venture projects reached 361 worth more than $20 billion.
The US is Saudi Arabia’s largest trading partner. Bilateral trade between the two countries rose to $26 billion in 2004 as compared to a mere $160 million in 1970, according to a report published today by Saudi Gazette.
Abdulaziz Al-Zamil, chairman of Al-Zamil Group Industrial Section, represented the Saudi side while Donald Joseph Stanutz, Huntsman Corporation s President of Performance Products Division signed the shareholders agreement, which will see the formation of Arabian Amines Company (AAC).
Both companies will hold equal ownership of AAC.
Huntsman and Al-Zamil have set up manufacturing facility to produce maleic anhydride-butanediol, which started its operation recently in Saudi Arabia, he said.
The AAC, expected to start its operation by 2008 will produce ethylenediamine (EDA), Diethylenetriamine (DET A), Triethylenetetramine (TET A) and higher molecular weight versions such as TEPA, E-100, AEP and Piperazine. The products serve as specially intermediates for a variety of end uses including expoxy curing agents, bonding agents and lube-oil additives for gasoline and diesel engines.
Amr Al-Dabbagh, SAGIA s Governor said hosting of the signing ceremony is in line with its strategy to promote investments in the Kingdom’s energy sector, one of the vital sectors on which the agency is focused.
“I can’t tell much how pleased we are with our partnership,” Joseph said referring to the signing of the joint project, which is second partnership between his company and Al-Zamil.
One of the important elements of AAC is its technology transfer component, he said.
Highlighting the importance, he said that it is a major step for Huntsman to provide further advanced technology to Saudi Arabia.
He said the products coming out from AAC will serve not only the countries in the Middle East but also the rest of the world. There are many people in the world engaged in the petrochemical products like ethylene but only a handful of them produce amines.