Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) announced that it has completed its Ethan project with the commissioning of its ethane receipt & handling facilities and ethane cracking, at its Dahej Manufacturing Facility in Gujarat. The world’s largest and most complex ethane project in a world record time of less than three years.
RIL’s ethane project involved securing ethane refrigeration capacity in the US Gulf coast; delivery of dedicated Very Large Ethane Carriers (VLECs) to carry ethane from the US Gulf Coast to the West Coast of India; construction of ethane receipt and handling facilities; laying pipelines and upgrading crackers (to receive ethane) at Dahej, Hazira and Nagothane Manufacturing Facilities.
The execution of this project at this scale and magnitude is a first in the world and it is the first company to globally conceptualise large-scale imports of ethane from North America as feedstock for its cracker portfolio in India. The project involved seamless integration of several elements across a complex infrastructure value chain.
The shale gas industry in North America has grown exponentially in the past 5 years. Consequently ethane has become one of the most competitively priced feedstock for US crackers.
The supply of ethane to RIL’s crackers at Dahej, Hazira and Nagothane will provide feedstock security and flexibility, enabling the company to select the most optimal feed mix based on market conditions. This will improve the cost competitiveness of RIL’s existing crackers and enable it to optimise the portfolio in a volatile market environment.
RIL is primarily a naphtha-based petrochemical player. The cost of feedstock is the largest that petrochemical companies bear with feedstock accounting for 40-60% of the total cost.
RIL commissions largest and most complex ethane project