KOTA KINABALU: Sabah is set to become a key fertiliser producer in the region with a proposed plant at the Sipitang Oil & Gas Industrial Park (Sogip).
The plant will be set jointly by chemical giant the EuroChem Group and construction and technology firm Maire Tecnimont.
EuroChem CEO Dmitry Strezhnev and Maire Tecnimont counterpart Dr Pierroberto Folgiero met Chief Minister Tan Sri Musa Aman here for a briefing about the proposed project.
The meeting took place following the decision by the Sabah Oil and Gas Development Corporation (SODGC) to accept the joint EuroChem and Maire Tecnimont investment proposal to develop a fertiliser plant at Sogip.
At the meeting, Strezhnev and Folgiero explained their intention to develop a state-of-the-art nitrogen fertiliser plant and the next steps to be undertaken before any work on the project started.
Folgiero said Maire Technimont was very keen to work together with SODGC on the proposed development and share their technological know-how.
“We believe something positive will come out of this collaboration,” he said.
Strezhnev added that he believed the venture would benefit from Eurochem’s technological expertise especially in oil gas downstream industries.
Swiss-based EuroChem Group AG, one of the world’s leading fertiliser companies, and Tecnimont SpA of Italy, an international engineering and construction specialist, are combining their strengths and expertise to bring the project to fruition.
The fertiliser plant will make a substantial contribution to Sabah’s industrial growth and development, creating hundreds of new jobs, most of them expected to be hired and trained locally.
Musa said the state government was taking the lead in this joint venture, which would bring potential economic spinoffs and significant benefits for the state and its people.
“By choosing EuroChem and Maire Tecnimont, two globally recognised industry leaders, the state has underlined its determination to attract other major international companies as well as local businesses to Sabah as a whole, and to Sogip in particular,” he said.
He said Sabah was on the right track in its downstream development of oil and gas and the establishment of Sogip would facilitate this.
“It is my hope that this collaboration will lead to further capacity building in the oil and gas downstream industries,” he said.
He said both EuroChem Group and Maire Tecnimont would provide regular updates on the status of the project’s development.