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Ineos to build Europe’s largest butane storage tank, will import US supplies

HOUSTON, March 9, 2017 (PCW) – Ineos on Thursday said it has signed a deal with Oiltanking Antwerp Gas Terminal to build Europe’s largest butane storage tank at Oiltanking’s terminal in Antwerp.

The 135,000 cubic meter tank will be used to store imported US butane, as well as supplies from other global markets via VLGC carriers. Ineos plans to use the butane as a feedstock for its naphtha crackers in Koln, Germany and, at a later date, its facility in Lavera, France. This would also allow Ineos Trading & Shipping to trade butane in Europe.

The terminal is expected to go into service in 2019.

In a separate statement Thursday, Oiltanking said the deal with Ineos would expand its terminal’s capacity by 100%. Oiltanking added after storage, the butane would be shipped via barges down the Rhine to Ineos’ Koln crackers.

Butane exports from the US have increased dramatically in recent months. US butane exports hit a high in May 2016 of 45.98 million barrels (1.48 million b/d), according to EIA data. Year-over-year, butane exports have risen nearly 11%. While the bulk of cargoes tend to go to Asia, Europe was seen as a hot market over the last few months due to a scarcity of butane in the Mediterranean and the Middle East. -- Samantha Hartke

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