As the quest for added value at a downstream level in the Middle East continues, news has emerged that Saudi Arabia’s Tasnee is to start operations at two new petrochemicals plants before the end of 2009.

Speaking at a recent MEED conference this summer, a Tasnee company executive is believed to have said that a facility for producing plastic film would be finished by September, while construction work on a plastics compounding plant would be completed in December.

The first project is a 30,000 tonnes per year (tpy) bi-axially oriented polypropylene plant, which will produce plastic films for packaging.

The second project is a 35,000 tpy polypropylene compounding plant at Jubail, which will produce basic plastics for household plastics and automotive parts.

The projects are thought to be part of Tasnee’s drive to move into more specialised plastics rather than basic products such as polyethylene or polypropylene.