BFI fertiliser plant secures natural gas supply for next 20 years

|     James Kon     |

THE Brunei Fertilizer Industries Sdn Bhd (BFI) fertiliser plant currently under construction at the 55-hectare site at Sungai Liang Industrial Park will be among the largest fertiliser plants in the Southeast Asia region.

The plant is expected to begin full commercial operations in 2021 and is estimated to create 350 direct employment opportunities for Bruneians once up and running.

To ensure the constant supply of natural gas to the BFI fertiliser plant over the next 20 years in support of downstream industrial development in Brunei, a Commercial Agreements signing between Permai Holdings, BFI and Brunei Shell Petroleum Co Sdn Bhd (BSP) was held at The Empire Hotel & Country Club yesterday morning.

Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office and Minister of Finance and Economy II Dato Seri Setia Dr Awang Haji Mohd Amin Liew bin Abdullah attended the ceremony as guest of honour to witness the signing.

The agreements were signed by Permanent Secretary (Investment) at the Ministry of Finance and Economy (MoFE) Haji Khairuddin bin Haji Abdul Hamid as Director of Permai; CEO of BFI Mohammed S Baderkhan; and BSP Acting Managing Director Yap Kong Fah.

Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office and Minister of Finance and Economy II Dato Seri Setia Dr Awang Haji Mohd Amin Liew bin Abdullah witnessing the signing ceremony. – RAHWANI ZAHARI

Also present at the event were Deputy Minister of Energy, Manpower and Industry Dato Seri Paduka Awang Haji Matsatejo bin Sokiaw; permanent secretaries; senior government officials; and other invited guests.

Under the agreements, BSP will supply 0.5 trillion cubic feet of natural gas to BFI over the next 20 years.

The BFI fertiliser plant is a flagship economic project and part of wider efforts by the Government of His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Sa’adul Khairi Waddien, Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam to revitalise and diversify Brunei’s economy, by further extending the value chain of its energy sector through the development of capabilities in export-oriented downstream industries.

Supporting the successful development and operations of the BFI fertiliser project is also an important means for BSP to deliver on its mission to fuel Brunei’s future and support the growth of Bruneian businesses and capabilities toward realising Brunei Vision 2035.

“Today we reach another significant milestone in the wider efforts of His Majesty’s Government through the Strategic Development Capital Fund (SDC) to revitalise and diversify the economy by extending further the value chain of the country’s energy sector,” said Haji Khairuddin in his address.

He added that the fertiliser plant is one of the oil and gas downstream projects identified by the Strategic Development Capital Fund at the MoFE.

The project, Haji Khairuddin says, is hoped to contribute to the country’s economic growth, create new employment opportunities and diversification across various sectors, which is expected to broaden the revenue base of the government.

Touching on the plant’s operational capacity, Haji Khairuddin said, “The Brunei Fertilizer Industries’ fertiliser plant will have the capacity to produce 2,200 metric tonnes of ammonia per day, which will then be used as feedstock for the production of 3,900 metric tonnes of urea per day of which the majority will be exported to the region.”

“The urea will also be made available to support the fertiliser needs of local farmers and enterprises in the domestic agriculture sector,” he continued.

“This project will also compliment other existing oil and gas downstream projects such as Brunei Methanol Company and the ongoing Hengyi Industries refinery project at Pulau Muara Besar. It will also provide a building block for even more downstream activities such as the production of urea-formaldehyde resins or melamine, which have applications in various other industries.”