Brunei-China joint petrochemical venture to expand into 2nd phase: minister
Hengyi Industries Sdn Bhd, a petrochemical joint venture between Brunei and China, is expanding into the second phase construction of its oil refinery and petrochemical project at Pulau Muara Besar (PMB), an industrial park on an island at the Brunei Bay.
"However, there are still issues to be sorted out before we can move on to Phase 2 of the expansion. Fortunately, we are quite close to it. The scale of Phase 2 is larger and will contribute significantly to the country's gross domestic product (GDP)," Brunei's Minister at the Prime Minister's Office and Second Minister of Finance and Economy Haji Mohd Amin Liew was quoted as saying on Friday by local daily the Borneo Bulletin.
"We also have other projects lined up to diversify the country's economy and contribute to higher GDP growth besides creating more employment for locals," the minister told a press conference.
He added that the Hengyi project that had gone into full operation at the end of last year gave Brunei's second quarter's GDP growth a major boost.
"The Hengyi project is now in full swing indicating an increase in our economic growth," the minister said, adding that there has also been growth in the non-oil and gas sector like agriculture but the services sector has declined.
Hengyi Industries is a joint venture between China's Zhejiang Hengyi Group and Damai Holdings, a wholly-owned subsidiary under the Brunei government's Strategic Development Capital Fund, with 70 percent and 30 percent of the shares respectively.
Hengyi invested about 3.45 billion U.S. dollars in the first phase of its PMB oil refinery and petrochemical project, which went into full operation in November 2019 and equipped the company with 8 million tons of crude oil processing capacity per year.
The company said on Sept. 16 that it was planning to invest about 13.654 billion U.S. dollars in the second phase expansion.
Hengyi's CEO Chen Liancai told Xinhua that the construction of the proposed second phase expansion is expected to last for three years and that it will add 14 million tons of crude oil processing capacity per year upon completion.