Huizhou in Guangdong province plans to establish a world-class, green petrochemicals production base after expanding cooperation with major global industry leaders.
The Guangdong government signed a series of cooperative deals worth billions of dollars with Exxon Mobil Corp on Wednesday. The agreements involve building a petrochemicals complex and liquefied natural gas project in Huizhou.
According to the deals, the first phase of construction of the project alone involves an investment of more than $4 billion. It will utilize advanced, environmentally friendly and mature proprietary production technologies to ensure construction of a green petrochemicals complex, playing a leading role in Huizhou's and Guangdong's economic development in the coming years.
A statement from the Huizhou city government said the project is scheduled to start production by the end of 2023. It is intended to help alleviate shortages of polyolefin-based plastics in the mainland market and reduce the Chinese market's dependence on imports of high-performance polyolefin products, according to the statement.
Guangdong Party Secretary Li Xi, Governor of Guangdong Ma Xingrui and Exxon Chairman and CEO Darren Woods participated in the signing ceremony. Ma met with Woods before the ceremony to discuss expanding cooperation between Guangdong and Exxon.
"Guangdong has great potential for the development of the petrochemical industry and the province's market for petrochemical products is huge," Ma said.
He promised to improve Guangdong's investment and business environment, and to promote the rule of law to support and offer better services for Exxon's investment and development in the province.
"Guangdong expects Exxon will play a role in promoting the province's energy structure and upgrading its petrochemical industry," Ma said.
Woods said Exxon attaches great importance to developing in Guangdong and the mainland market, and has great confidence in investing in the province.
"The deal with Guangdong is just the first step in Exxon's long-term cooperation with the province," Woods said.
He said Exxon's Huizhou project will help to expand its cooperation with Guangdong in the years to come.
The agreements came after German chemical company BASF SE announced plans to invest $10 billion to build a wholly foreign-owned chemical complex in Guangdong in July.
And in May, China National Offshore Oil Corp and Shell Nanhai BV officially kicked off production of their second ethylene cracker plant at their Nanhai petrochemicals complex in Daya Bay in Huizhou.
The complex uses Shell's proprietary OMEGA, SMPO and polyols technologies to produce high-quality petrochemical products.