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Sinopec, Marubeni join hands for petrochem projects

07-14-2010 13:38 BJT

BEIJING, July 14 (Xinhaunet) -- Asia's largest refiner Sinopec Corp has formed an alliance with Japanese trading company Marubeni Corp for overseas energy and petrochemical projects in regions like South America and Africa.

"We do not rule out the possibility to cooperate with Marubeni in overseas projects since the Japanese company has a very diversified business portfolio and is active in many fields," Huang Wensheng, spokesman of Sinopec told China Daily on Wednesday, adding that the two companies already have several cooperative projects in China."

Sinopec, or China Petroleum & Chemical Corp, has not disclosed any further details on the cooperation plan so far.

"Sinopec is seeking partners who have access to overseas resources and rich experience in international projects which the refiner lacks," said Lin Boqiang, director of the China Center for Energy Economics Research at Xiamen University.

The company is also looking for partners who are strong in marketing refinery and chemical products, said Zhou Xiujie, an industry analyst with China Investment Consulting.

South America and Africa are not exactly the top destinations for energy producers, said Lin. Many Chinese energy companies are also in a weak position to jostle for global resources, as they were slow in entering the race.

But Zhou believes South America and Africa have a more stable political environment and are less competitive than the Middle East region from which China currently imports most of its oil.

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