Ties between one of the world's biggest oil producers and one of its biggest consumers grew tighter Sept. 12 with the announcement of a five-year agreement between petrochemical giant Saudi Basic Industries Corp. and the Chinese Academy of Sciences.
As part of the pact, inked in Beijing, Sabic is making a multimillion-dollar investment that covers joint research in chemistry and chemical engineering, with a long-term goal of developing market-ready solutions.
Chinese students and scientists will be able to do research at Sabic's 19 research centers in Saudi Arabia, the United States, Europe and Asia.
Signing of the pact coincides with a Scientific Forum on Frontiers of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, held September 14-15 at China's Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics. The forum is focusing on raw materials, nanotechnology and composite materials.
Said Ernesto Occhiello, Sabic executive vice president: “We are on a quest to spearhead technological advancement for material solutions, to explore sustainable ways to get more and better use out of natural resources.”
Academy Vice President Ding Zhongli said, “As we strive to build [the Academy] into a world-class scientific research base for cultivating talent and promoting the development of China's high and new technology industries, we will continue to partner with international players like Sabic.”
The pact solidifies an already robust relationship between SABIC and Academy member Dalian Institute. Last December, Sabic and the institute established the SABIC-DICP Research Center for Advanced Chemicals Production Technology, which will include two endowed professorships.
Sabic, which has about 40,000 employees more than 45 countries, reported sales of $50.4 billion in 2013. It is 70 percent owned by the Saudi Arabian government, with the remaining 30 percent owned by Saudi individuals and other Gulf Cooperation Council members.