The Overseas Investors Chamber of Commerce and Industry (OICCI) has been interested in the strengthening of petrochemical sector in the country. In this regard the OICCI has also written a letter to Prime Minister’s Advisor on Commerce and Investment, Abdul Razak Dawood, in which foreign companies have proposed incentives to support petrochemical industry locally.
A delegation from the OICCI also held a meeting in Islamabad to seek support for the petrochemical industry.
The OICCI maintains that the development in the petrochemical policy needs to focus on cost competitiveness, market volume access/demand as well as ease of doing business and streamlining of the processes for new investors. Once all these sectors have been addressed Pakistan can attract investment up to $ 3 billion in the short term, which will improve investment to GDP ratio by 100 bps. In the medium term, these investments will enable the country to achieve import substitution up to $ 800 million per annum, generate employment of 50,000 people and generate additional tax collection amounting to Rs 50 billion per annum.
In summary the petrochemical industry comprises of the following sectors (i) upstream products such as Ethane, Propane, Ethylene, Propylene, Styrene, Xylene, etc, which are basic feedstock of engineering plastics are not being manufactured locally due to unavailability of Naphtha cracker in Pakistan and local demand is being met through imports; (ii) Midstream products not manufactured locally: (a) Polyethylene (PE), Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS), etc. Polypropylene (PP) is presently not being manufactured locally but two projects are in pipeline: (b) manufactured locally, Polyvinylchloride (PVC), Polystyrene (PS), Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET), Phthyalic Anhydride (PA), Purified Terephthalic Acid (PTA), Linear Alkyl Benzene Sulfonic Acid (LABSA), Sodium Laurel Ether Sulfate (SLES) and Methanol, etc. The processes of this are injection molding, extrusion etc. Iii Downstream products: Major applications are in construction sector (pipes, doors, windows, etc); auto parts; home appliances; electrical & electronics items; household items; furniture; apparel; packaging; scientific and medical equipment; paint & varnishes and artificial leather etc.