Reliance and BP to control global paraxylene market

Vol 10, PW 24 (05 Apr 07) Midstream & Downstream

Paraxylene is a tongue twister of a name but this product is at the centre of an emerging, highly significant alliance between Reliance Industries and UK oil major BP.

Reliance is already India’s biggest producer of paraxylene, which is raw material for purified terephthalic acid, used to produce fibres for polyester textiles. But once the alliance with BP is confirmed, Reliance and BP will together become the world’s largest producer of paraxylene, pushing leader ExxonMobil to second place.

An industry source tells us ongoing secret talks between top management at Reliance and BP are at an advanced stage. “(Reliance chairman) Mukesh Ambani is personally handling the talks,â€‌ says a source.

“An announcement is likely within a month or so.â€‌ Details about the deal are sketchy, but we understand it will be a marketing and technology alliance.

Reliance will set up a brand new paraxylene factory at Jamnagar in its tax-free, upcoming Special Economic Zone, which will also have a new 30m t/y petroleum refinery. Technology to produce paraxylene at this new factory will be bought from BP, which has developed energy efficient proprietary technology (See