Hengyi Industries Sdn Bhd, a joint petrochemical venture between China and Brunei in Bandar Seri Begawan, capital of Brunei, has announced that its atmospheric and vacuum distillation unit has successfully produced qualified petrochemical products.
Chen Liancai, CEO of Hengyi Industries, told Xinhua agency recently that the new success means that Hengyi’s oil refinery and petrochemical project at Pulau Muara Besar (PMB), a 955-ha industrial park on an island at the Brunei Bay, has taken a solid step toward full commercial operation.
Chen said that the operation of the atmospheric and vacuum distillation unit is safe and stable, indicating that the unit has been successfully started, which laid the foundation for the project to enter the entire process of the refinery.
According to Chen, Hengyi’s PMB project is being developed in two phases. The first phase takes up 276 ha of land and a total investment of US$3.45 billion, and Hengyi is planning to commit a possible further US$12 billion for development of the second phase.
The first phase of the project has a processing capacity of 8 million tonnes/year of crude oil. The crude oil needed for the project will be provided partially by Brunei, and the rest will be imported from the surrounding oil-producing countries.
Haji Mat Suny, Brunei’s Minister of Energy, Manpower and Industry had said in February that after full operation, the PMB project is expected to increase Brunei’s GDP by US$1.33 billion in the first year and create more than 1,600 jobs.
Hengyi Industries is a joint venture between China’s Zhejiang Hengyi Group (70%) and Damai Holdings (30%), a wholly-owned subsidiary under the Brunei government’s Strategic Development Capital Fund.
Hengyi’s investment is the largest foreign direct investment in Brunei from China.