Saudi Arabia to Move Further Downstream in 2011

photo : zawya.com

According to the excellent MEED, Saudi Arabia is set to further expand its downstream petrochemicals industry in 2011 with more than $20BN of new investments. With high unemployment rates and a growing young population, the government has recognised the need to provide extra jobs for the local population.

As we move down the petchems chain, many more jobs are created, particularly if consumer goods are produced locally. The country already has a solid cracker and polymers industry with SABIC and Saudi Aramco the major players. Saudi Arabia  is not alone in this thinking, with the development of the ADBIC polymer park in Abu Dhabi.

Although plastics consumption per capita is relatively high in the region, the markets are fairly small in terms of population. So to attract international companies and bring in the knowledge and expertise, attractive investment conditions will be required.

However, where there is a will, there is a way. The fact that the Saudi Government recognises the overwhelming need to create employment, means that things will certainly happen. Watch this space!

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