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Petronas Chemicals eyeing acquisitions to boost specialty business

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Hydrocarbon Engineering,

Reuters has reported that the chemical manufacturing unit of Malaysia’s state energy firm Petronas is looking to acquire companies to expand its specialty chemical business.

Petronas Chemicals Group Bhd is looking to grow aggressively in specialty chemicals: raw materials used to manufacture consumer products such as high-performance tyres and LCD televisions.

CEO Sazali Hamzah said acquisitions would be a key step toward expanding the higher-margin specialty chemicals business.

“We have already targeted a few. When we acquire, it’s not only for technology but also for market penetration,” Sazali told Reuters in an interview, adding that Petronas Chemicals was looking at companies in Europe, the US and India.

Petronas has invested heavily in its downstream business over the last few years amid analyst estimates that it will produce less oil in the future. Petronas’ largest downstream project, the Refinery and Petrochemical Integrated Development (RAPID) project in the southern Malaysian state of Johor, has received an estimated US$27 billion of total investment.

Earlier in 2018, Aramco inked a deal to invest US$7 billion in RAPID. It later bought a US$900 million stake in petrochemical projects in the RAPID complex.

Sazali said Aramco could expand its investment in the Pengerang Integrated Complex (PIC) of which RAPID is a part.

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