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Feature: Central Asia Becomes Gas-to-Liquids Test Case

Tuesday 28 April 2015

LONDON (Platts) – Central Asia is emerging as a focus for developers of the next generation of small-scale gas-to-liquids projects, as hopes of a North American GTL boom fade.

The past few weeks have seen two new projects advance, with UK company Compact GTL, chaired by ex-BP chief Tony Hayward, unveiling plans for a plant in Kazakhstan’s northwestern region of Aktobe, and an agreement on a project in Turkmenistan involving South Korea’s Hyundai Engineering and Construction and LG International.

The announcements follow another GTL project already under development in Turkmenistan that brings together Japan’s Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Turkish building company Ronesans and Danish engineering and petrochemical company Haldor Topsoe.

In addition, South Africa’s Sasol remains formally committed to a larger, 38,000 b/d GTL project in Uzbekistan, although progress has been slow.

The projects are advancements on GTL technology first developed in 1920s Germany and taken up in the post-war period by Apartheid-era South Africa.

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