Interview: Abdulrahman Ali Al Abdulla

What impact is Muntajat expected to have on the performance of Qatar’s chemical and petrochemical industries and customers?

ABDULRAHMAN ALI AL ABDULLA: Muntajat’s establishment in 2012 marked an important milestone in the development of the chemical and petrochemical industry in the state of Qatar, which dates back more than four decades. The promise of Muntajat is the consolidation of marketing, sales and distribution activities. By doing that, it allows the producing entities to focus on their core business of producing quality chemical and petrochemical products. Our focus is currently on building an advanced logistics and supply chain programme that benefits from economies of scale and enables us to improve the customer experience.

Consolidation gives our customers a single point of reference when buying their chemicals, polymers and fertilisers from the state of Qatar. In the past, customers had to deal with different entities to purchase different products, but at present they are able to interact with a single entity: Muntajat. We can cater to their requirements while reducing time, effort and other expenses which are critical to allowing them to get on with their business.

This is good for the country, the producing entities and customers, who will see added values and benefits from investment in services. Looking forward, in light of the growing global demand for chemicals, polymers and fertilisers, we expect to continue to drive new value through Muntajat.

Is the strategy for exports and sales of Qatar’s petrochemicals changing compared to what producers have done in the past?

AL ABDULLA: The global demand for chemicals and petrochemicals is on the rise. The fastest growth is coming from Asia, particularly China and the Indian subcontinent, which are strategic markets to us. Meeting the increasing global demand is a big challenge, and this is where Muntajat’s value as a dedicated marketing company comes in. Having streamlined and consolidated marketing and distribution activities drives higher efficiencies in getting Qatar’s chemical and petrochemical products to customers around the world. Muntajat is currently expanding its global presence through the establishment of up to 36 offices and logistics centres to be located in strategic cities worldwide, in addition to adapting best-in-class technologies and bringing in top-notch expertise.

What is being done to increase petrochemicals output and boost global competitiveness?

AL ABDULLA: We remain in growth mode in Qatar, as evidenced by the continued investment being made. Mohammed bin Saleh Al Sada, Qatar’s minister of energy and industry, has stated that around $25bn will be invested up until 2020 in the chemicals and petrochemicals sector, in order to support and further grow the industry.

These investments will see the total output rise to 23m tonnes; that is more than double the current output which stands at 10m tonnes. In addition, we see an increase in demand across the product range, especially in fertilisers as developing markets require these products to increase and secure their food supply.

Qatar’s petrochemical industry made a giant leap in 2012 by starting up two world-scale plants at Mesaieed: the Qatar Petrochemical Company’s low-density polyethylene plant, QAPCO-LPDE 3; and the Qatar Fertiliser Company’s Qafco 6.

What effect does the pricing of oil have on the production of chemicals and petrochemicals?

AL ABDULLA: There is not a direct link between the price of oil and the production of chemicals and petrochemicals in Qatar’s case because the feedstock for many of the products being produced is derived from natural gas. Chemicals and petrochemicals are high-value downstream products and were developed to diversify the revenue stream from natural resources.