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AFX. The Rockefeller family is taking a $100 million stake (31%) in China’s Shandong Jiutai Chemical Co, and teaming up on the construction of a $677-million (5.6 bln yuan) dimethyl ether (DME) production facility.

DME is a clean-burning, synthetic substitute for diesel. (Earlier post.)

The new project, with an annual capacity of one million metric tons (approximately 20,600 barrels per day), is scheduled to start soon. Jiutai produced 50,000 metric tons of DME last year. An additional 100,000 tons of capacity will be added by April.

Coal-gasification using Chevron texaco technology provides the syngas feedstock for the DME conversion. Given its enormous coal resources, China is keenly interested in coal liquefaction technologies for synthetic fuels.

Demand for DME in China is estimated to reach 5.0–10 mln tons (103–206 thousand barrels per day) within five years.


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