The average Singaporean might already be familiar with ExxonMobil’s Esso petrol stations and cylinder cooking gas (liquefied petroleum gas, or LPG).
However, these consumer-facing products are only the tip of the iceberg.
Having operated here for over 120 years, global energy giant ExxonMobil is one of Singapore’s largest foreign investors and has a multi-billion-dollar presence on our shores. It has even chosen Singapore as home to its largest integrated manufacturing site in the world.
As a result, ExxonMobil has a greater impact on lives here and in the region than most might realise. Here is a glimpse at the corporation’s sizeable manufacturing footprint here.
ExxonMobil’s Singapore Refinery: Fuel to power your life
One half of a massive integrated refinery and petrochemical complex, ExxonMobil’s Singapore Refinery is the energy firm’s largest in the world, with a refining capability of as much as 592,000 barrels of crude oil daily.
These fuels go way beyond the Esso car fuels and cooking gas that many Singaporeans know and use. The refinery also manufactures industrial, aviation and marine fuels, all of which power just about every conceivable mode of transport.
ExxonMobil also manufactures specialty products such as low-sulphur diesel, which reduces harmful emissions, to meet the growing demand for “cleaner” fuels.
That’s not all. The Singapore refinery also produces lubricant basestocks, which are then blended here into lubricants such as Mobil 1™ for a variety of transport types in Singapore and the region. These lubricants reduce friction and corrosion in vehicles, allowing them to run more smoothly and efficiently.
So the next time you commute to work, jet off on a holiday or await your latest online shopping shipment, you know that it is likely that ExxonMobil powers your lifestyle — from the basic necessities to the eye-catching luxuries.
ExxonMobil’s Singapore Chemical Plant: Building blocks for everyday items
The Singapore Refinery is fully integrated with its sister petrochemical complex, which processes raw material into ethylene - the building block of many familiar consumer products.
Built in 2001, the Singapore Chemical Plant was expanded to double its ethylene capacity in 2013, making it ExxonMobil Chemical’s largest investment in the world. Today, the massive plant can produce up to 1.9 million tonnes of ethylene as well as several other petrochemicals annually.
The petrochemicals are then further processed and transformed into common objects, ranging from the basic and everyday — water bottles, food packaging, baby diapers — to the specialised such as quick-dry athletic clothing, Post-It notes, and car tyre linings.
In fact, petrochemicals are so much a part of modern life that it is difficult to imagine living without them (Just try to picture life without your favourite lipstick or your laptop!).
For the vast majority of Singaporeans, the petrochemicals that ExxonMobil manufactures on our doorstep play an indirect yet indispensable role in daily life.
Innovating to meet growing needs
With living standards on the rise as our city becomes more globally connected than ever before, Singapore’s energy and consumer product needs are expected to continue growing.
Ever the innovator, ExxonMobil is poised to meet the growing needs of not just Singapore, but the entire region, in a sustainable manner. In October 2017, it unveiled a new 84-megawatt cogeneration plant in its integrated manufacturing site at Jurong, bringing its cogeneration capacity to over 440 megawatts in Singapore alone. The new plant can generate enough electricity to power over 150,000 four-room Housing and Development Board flats here and improves energy efficiency at the Singapore Refinery by 4 to 5 per cent.
ExxonMobil’s latest cogeneration plant uses natural gas and waste heat from the refinery to generate electricity and steam to power plant operations. Cogeneration captures and recycles thermal energy that would be otherwise wasted — thus improving overall energy efficiency and reducing carbon dioxide emissions.
With continual upgrades like this, ExxonMobil is well positioned to play the long game in the region’s energy and consumer product markets.