INEOS is to deliver the first supply of US ethane from shale gas to China in 2019.
The long term supply agreement with SP Chemicals includes the construction of a carrier ship with a capacity of 95,000 cubic meters.
Known in the US as a Very Large Ethane Carrier (VLEC), it is expected to be the largest of its kind in the world.
Ethane is used to make ethylene – one of the world’s most important chemical building blocks. Ethylene is an important raw material used to make products for a wide variety of industrial and consumer markets such as transportation, electronics, textile and construction.
The petrochemicals giant will ship the ethane from shale gas to SP Chemicals’ new gas cracker facility, currently under construction in Taixing China.
David Thompson, CEO of INEOS Trading & Shipping said: “This is another world first for INEOS after importing shale gas to Europe in 2015.
“By bringing in US ethane from shale gas to China for the first time, we are now leading the way in shipping ethane worldwide to meet the needs of an expanding chemicals sector.”