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PTT looking for a partner for its Ohio petrochemical plant

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Feb 5 (Reuters) - A U.S. subsidiary of state-owned Thai oiland gas company PTT PCL said on Friday that it wasfocused on finding a partner for its proposed petrochemicalplant in Ohio that will turn ethane into plastics.

"The focus of the project is finding a partner. There arevery substantive conversations going on with a number ofcompanies that the project team feels good about," said DanWilliamson, a spokesman for the project.

He said he could not share the names of those companies atthis time.

Williamson also said the team was in the process of meetingwith members of President Joe Biden's administration to briefthem on the benefits of the project, which will cost anestimated $10 billion to build and create hundreds of full-timejobs and thousands of construction jobs.

He also noted that renewables would be part of the project.

Last summer, PTT's PTT Global Chemical America (PTTGCA)subsidiary delayed making a final investment decision to buildthe ethane cracker from the first half of 2020 to the first halfof 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Williamson said the company still hopes to make a finalinvestment decision during the first half of 2021 but noted thattime frame is a "reasonable hope" and not a "set in stone"prediction.

If it were not for the pandemic, the company has said theplant would likely already be under construction.

The ethane cracker is designed to produce about 1.5 millionmetric tons of ethylene per year and will take 4-6 years tobuild.

In addition to PTTGCA's project, Royal Dutch Shell PLCis building an ethane cracker nearby in westernPennsylvania that is expected to enter service in the early2020s.

(Reporting by Scott DiSavino; Editing by David Gregorio)