Mexico City — Two weeks after celebrating the third year of production at its Ethylene XXI petrochemical complex in Nanchital, Veracruz state, Braskem Idesa SAPI is mulling the possibility of expansion.
"We are always looking at that," the Brazilian-Mexican joint venture's commercial director, Alfredo Prince, said at Plastimagen. "We have the space."
However, Mexico's ethane feedstock shortfall means that expanding the $5.2 billion facility, whose ethane cracker has a production capacity of 1.05 million metric tons of ethylene a year, will have to wait. Prince said the cracker is running at just above 80 percent of its capacity.
"Expansion? Not for the moment," Cleantho de Paiva Leite Filho, Braskem Idesa's director of institutional relations, told Plastics News in a separate interview April 2.
"We can't talk of expansion right now. What we can talk about is how to improve the availability of additional raw materials so that both Braskem Idesa and Pemex Etileno can operate at full capacity.
"Unfortunately Pemex Exploración is not producing enough gas to supply the country's [three crackers]," he said.