The biggest petrochemical investment of Orlen Group in Czech

Unipetrol, a subsidiary of PKN ORLEN, and Italy’s Technip today signed a contract for the construction of a new polyethylene unit (PE3) at the Litvinov plant. The ORLEN Group’s largest investment on the Czech market and the largest project in the history of the Czech petrochemical industry, the new unit will rank among Europe’s most advanced production facilities of its kind. The contract’s value is CZK 5.76bn (EUR 213m), while the project’s overall cost is estimated at CZK 8.5bn (EUR 314m). The unit is scheduled to come on-line in mid-2018.

“Having signed an agreement with the contractor, we are entering the execution phase of our largest investment project on the Czech market, which will strengthen the position of one our key companies in Europe. This is a very clear indication of the market’s importance to our Group and a sign of our long-term commitment to the development of not only Unipetrol assets, but also the Czech petrochemical industry,” said Jacek Krawiec, President of the PKN ORLEN Management Board and Chairman of the Unipetrol Supervisory Board.

Since entering the Czech market, PKN ORLEN has invested over a billion euro in the development of Unipetrol, a key asset to the ORLEN Group. This year’s capital expenditure increased by EUR 24m following the acquisition of a 32.4% interest in Česká Rafinérská from Eni of Italy. As a result of the transaction, the Company became the refinery’s sole owner. The transaction’s objective was to ensure the availability and security of feedstock supplies for Unipetrol’s petrochemical segment, contributing to its further growth.

The new facility, which is to replace the PE1 unit currently in operation, will have an annual production capacity of 270,000 tonnes. The PE2 polyethylene unit (with a capacity of 200 thousand tonnes per year) will remain on-line. The project will help increase the utilisation of the ethylene unit and facilitate stronger integration of petrochemical and refining production at the Unipetrol Group. Thanks to cutting-edge technologies to be used in the project, the company will be able to reach out to new market segments, including the cosmetic and packaging industries. The new polyethylene unit will be built based on a technology licence obtained by Unipetrol from INEOS in late 2013.