Japan-based Mitsubishi Heavy Industries will collaborate with The Netherlands-based Royal Dutch Shell and US-based ExxonMobil Corporation to develop coal liquefying facilities to produce petrol and other petroleum products, according to the Nikkei Shimbun, as cited by the Kuwait News Agency.

With crude oil prices surging above $70 per barrel, the demand for coal liquefying plants may reach JPY10 trillion by 2020, the financial newspaper said, as reported by the Kuwait News Agency.

In order to cater to the predicted growth in demand, Shell and ExxonMobil, in association with Mitsubishi, have started to develop large-scale commercial plants that can process around 100,000 barrels of oil per day, and are planning to introduce such facilities beginning in 2010, the Nikkei Shimbun report said. Each facility is reportedly likely to cost around JPY15 billion.

While Mitsubishi will develop a special compressor to liquefy coal, Shell and ExxonMobil are also expected to purchase steam turbines to operate the compressors, the Nikkei Shimbun report revealed, as reported by the Kuwait News Agency.