The expansion project at the Baytown petrochemical complex will see the addition of a polymer unit and a new olefins plant that will enable the company to enter the linear alpha olefins market.

ExxonMobil expects the expansion project to make the most of the increased output from the Permian Basin where it is targeting an 80% increase in its production to achieve more than a million oil-equivalent barrels per day by as early as 2024.

The polymer unit will annually produce approximately 400,000 tons of the company’s Vistamaxx brand of polymers. On the other hand, the new olefins facility will have an annual production capacity of around 350,000 tons of linear alpha olefins.

ExxonMobil said that the expansion work at the Baytown petrochemical complex will involve nearly 2,000 jobs during the construction stage. Furthermore, the two new plants will contribute to the approximate 15% return on interest for the company on chemicals.

ExxonMobil chairman and CEO Darren Woods said: “Our Baytown chemical expansion will put us in a solid position to maximize the value of increased Permian Basin production and will deliver higher-demand, higher-value products produced at our Gulf Coast refining and chemical facilities.

“Global demand for chemicals is expected to be greater than energy demand growth and GDP growth over the next 20 years.”

Currently, the Baytown petrochemical complex includes a refinery, chemical plant, plastics plant, olefins plant, and global technology center. The petrochemical facility, which was founded in 1919, is spread over nearly 3,400 acres, located about 40km east of Houston.

Last month, ExxonMobil said that it will move ahead with a $1bn plus expansion of its Fawley refinery in the UK to boost the production of ultra-low sulfur diesel.

The expansion of the Fawley refinery in Southampton Water is expected to increase the production by nearly 45% or 38,000 barrels per day, in addition to logistics improvements.