Hanwha Total Petrochemical has revealed its plans to expand its Daesan refining and petrochemicals integrated platform in South Korea with an investment of $450m.

The expansion project is aimed at increasing the platform’s ethylene production capacity to 1.4 million tons per year, reflecting an increase by 30%.

In late 2014, the 3,300,000ft2 Daesan refining and petrochemicals platform was upgraded with an investment of $2bn which resulted in doubling its production capacity to meet the demand for plastics.

Hanwha Total Petrochemical is a joint venture formed in 2003 between South Korean business conglomerate Hanwha and Total with each having 50% stake.

The resulting increased ethylene production following the latest expansion project will be able to match the demand from the domestic market.

Besides, it will supply the surrounding fast-emerging Chinese market which imports a considerable proportion of its ethylene requirements, stated Total.

Total Refining & Chemicals president Bernard Pinatel said: “This project is part of our strategy to invest in world-class integrated platforms to develop petrochemicals based on competitive feedstock and targeting high-growth markets.

“The investment reflects the strong partnership with Hanwha and will contribute to the growth of our Refining & Petrochemicals cash flows.”

 The Daesan platform extension is expected to considerably improve its flexibility, allowing it to process competitively priced propane feedstock, which is richly available primarily due to the shale gas revolution in the US.

The Daesan expansion project is slated to be completed by the first half of 2019.

A strategic asset for South Korean business conglomerate, Hanwha, Daesan is regarded as one of the six world-class integrated platforms held by the French oil and gas giant, Total.

The Daesan platform, which had generated net revenue of around $1bn last year, features a flexible condensate splitter, a steam cracker and polymers, aromatics and styrene units.

Image: Daesan platform to be expanded by Hanwha Total Petrochemical. Photo: courtesy of Vichaya Kiatying-Angsulee/Freedigitalphotos.net.