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SABIC-Exxon joint venture hires ahead of 2022 startup

September 23, 2020

Saudi Basic Industries Corp., more commonly called SABIC, has already started hiring for a $10 billion joint venture project set to come online in 2022.

In fact, Gulf Coast Growth Ventures — the joint venture entity for the project — has already hired almost all of its permanent workforce, said Bashar Asiri, leader of SABIC's growth projects in the Americas. Irving, Texas-based Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM) is SABIC's joint venture partner for the project.

GCGV is expected to create more than 600 permanent jobs, paying an average of $90,000 per year. 

The project itself will create a massive plastics manufacturing facility in San Patricio County, Texas. It will include a 1.8 million-metric-ton ethane steam cracker, two polyethylene units and a monoethylene glycol unit, according to a press release announcing the final investment decision.

Those assets are slated to start up in 2022, but the venture may advance some of the units early — as soon as 2021, Asiri said. 

The GCGV project has reached an advanced stage of construction, and the JV has already begun training its permanent employees and started getting them involved in the commissioning of the new assets, Asiri said.

Meanwhile, the construction period is expected to create jobs for 6,000 workers. The Wood Group, McDermott & Turner Industries Group, Chiyoda & Kiewit, and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries & Zachry Group are the four primary engineering, procurement and construction companies and joint ventures building the project.

Both Exxon and SABIC have a major presence in Houston. ExxonMobil Chemical's headquarters are in the 385-acre campus that Exxon opened about three years ago in Springwoods Village, just north of Houston. 

SABIC has been growing its existing regional headquarters for the Americas — at 2500 CityWest Blvd. office in the Westchase District — over the past several years and is considering building a new U.S. headquarters in the Katy area. The company had no updates to provide regarding that headquarters decision.


By Joshua Mann, Houston Business Journal