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Iran National Petchem Co, Shell study new petchem plant

LONDON, Nov 16, 1999 -(Dow Jones)- Iran 's National Petrochemical Company has linked up with Shell Chemicals Ltd. and Elenac GmbH Kehl to conduct a feasibility study for a new petrochemical complex in Iran , NPC said in a statement Tuesday.

NPC said the new Olefin 8 Complex is likely to be built close to the Bandar Imam Petrochemical complex and existing port facilities in the southwest of Iran .

NPC said it is also studying the development of a polypropylene project at Bandar Imam in parallel with the Olefin 8 Complex study. The polypropylene study will be completed by mid 2000.

No details were given of the plants' potential capacities or investment costs.

Shell signed a deal Sunday with the National Iranian Oil Company to develop the offshore Soroush and Nowruz oil fields, located off Kharg Island in the northern part of the Persian Gulf .

However, Shell won't be able to go ahead with the oil fields deal until the U.S. government grants it a waiver from the Iran Libya Sanctions Act to protect its U.S.-based Shell Oil Company.

Under ILSA, companies can't invest more than $20 million a year in those countries without risking having their U.S. operations penalized by the U.S. government.

However, the U.S. government has said it may grant waivers from the sanctions, making judgments on a case-by-case basis.

Shell Chemicals Ltd. is a unit of the Royal/Dutch Shell Group (RD).


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