ExxonMobil held a virtual foundation-laying ceremony yesterday for its multibillion-dollar expansion of its Jurong Island integrated refining and petrochemical complex to increase its production capacity for higher-value products and cleaner fuels.
This investment, which the international energy company announced in April last year, will create 135 new jobs. It will also have significant spin-offs for the rest of the economy in areas such as logistics, process construction and maintenance, said Senior Minister and Coordinating Minister for National Security Teo Chee Hean, who participated in the ceremony.
In lieu of a physical foundation-laying ceremony, ExxonMobil held a video conference from two locations in Singapore and one in Dallas, Texas.
New catalyst and process technologies will be deployed at the Chemical and Refining Integrated Singapore Project to convert fuel oil and other bottom-of-the-barrel crude products into higher-value lubricant base stocks and distillates.
The expansion will boost production capacity of cleaner fuels with lower sulphur content by 48,000 barrels per day, and lubricant base stocks by 20,000 barrels per day.
It can also optimise overall energy use and limit emissions at the facility. Waste heat will be recovered and used to generate steam to reduce electricity and fuel consumption.
Mr Teo said: "Amidst a challenging outlook in the global economy and energy industry, this is a clear indication of ExxonMobil's continued commitment to and confidence in Singapore, as its choice partner and manufacturing hub for the region.
He noted that the energy and chemicals sector employs 25,000 workers and contributed 2.3 per cent of last year's gross domestic product as well as 10.8 per cent of manufacturing.
Mr Gan Seow Kee, chairman and managing director of ExxonMobil Asia Pacific, said: "ExxonMobil is building on our base in Singapore by deploying new technology and developing new products to support growing demand.
"We are committed to managing our operations with a focus on energy efficiency and doing our part to reduce the risk of climate change."
The Singapore refining and petrochemical complex is ExxonMobil's largest integrated manufacturing facility in the world, with a crude oil distillation capacity of 592,000 barrels per day and ethylene capacity of 1.9 million tonnes per year.
ExxonMobil is also one of Singapore's largest foreign manufacturing investors, with more than $25 billion in fixed asset investments.
The expansion will boost production capacity of cleaner fuels with lower sulphur content by 48,000 barrels per day, and lubricant base stocks by 20,000 barrels per day. It can also optimise overall energy use and limit emissions at the facility. Waste heat will be recovered and used to generate steam to reduce electricity and fuel consumption.
The company is in discussions with the Government on potential decarbonisation pathways, including opportunities to pilot novel carbon capture technologies here.
Mr Teo said: "The Government remains committed to working with our energy and chemicals sector... to adopt advanced manufacturing technologies, so as to improve their productivity, build new capabilities and accelerate innovation.