| 19 September, 2017

Saudi Dhahran Techno Valley to set up industrial gas tech center

A gas flame is seen in the desert near the Khurais oilfield, about 160 km (99 miles) from Riyadh.

A gas flame is seen in the desert near the Khurais oilfield, about 160 km (99 miles) from Riyadh.

REUTERS/Ali Jarekji
Saudi Dhahran - Dhahran Techno Valley, affiliated to King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals (KFUPM), seeks to expand its base of strategic partners through signing an agreement with the American Air Products Company, in which the latter will establish a world-class technology development center in Dhahran Techno Valley by 2019. The new center activities and research programs will focus on developing industrial gas technology, introducing, and developing new projects in Saudi Arabia.

Upon concluding the agreement with Air Products, the number of scientific research and technology development centers in Dhahran Techno Valley will amount to 18 local and international companies, which collaborate in the energy research sector.

Dr. Khaled Bin Saleh Al-Sultan, Rector of KFUPM and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Dhahran Techno Valley, signed the agreement representing Dhahran Techno Valley, while Dr. Seifi Ghasemi, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Air Products, represented Air Products in signing the agreement. The signing ceremony held Monday was attended by senior officials from major companies and KFUPM, in addition to representatives of various research centers in the Valley.

Dr. Khaled Bin Saleh Al-Sultan expressed his delight and honor to sign a cooperation agreement with Air Products, in which the company will join the strategic partners of Dhahran Techno Valley. "Today, Dhahran Techno Valley has become a landmark in the field of energy research in Saudi Arabia. It seeks to strengthen the cooperation ties between both the industrial and academic sectors, with the aim of promoting scientific research, developing and innovating the energy sector in Saudi Arabia," added Dr. Al-Sultan.

He emphasized that the partnership with Air Products represents a valuable addition to the Valley strategic partners’ platform. "Air Products technology center will be responsible for the development of Industrial gas technology, which will in turn contribute to the diversification of scientific research in the energy sector. This partnership will upgrade the research level from "exploration and production of energy" to "refining, treatment, and marketing", which comes in line with Saudi plans to support the knowledge-based economy and implement Saudi Vision 2030."

"We are delighted and proud to be building this world-class Industrial Gases technology center in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia," said Seifi Ghasemi, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Air Products. Located in the prestigious Dhahran Techno Valley Science Park, the Center will serve as the cornerstone for industrial gas technology and project development in Saudi Arabia," he said.

Dr. Samir Serhan, Air Products Executive Vice President, said "this investment by Air Products represents yet another example of our company’s strong commitment to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, both in terms of investment in the country’s future and in the development of its people. Once complete, the center will become the hub through which Air Products will provide technology expertise in support of new opportunities for industrial gases in the region. The center will deliver the latest technology from Air Products, focused on providing improvements in process safety, energy efficiency, reliability and operational excellence to serve our regional customers."

"Air Products has worked in Saudi Arabia since the 1970’s and made long term investments in the country since 2012 in conjunction with our joint venture partners", added Richard Boocock, Air Products President, Industrial Gases - Middle East, India, Egypt and Turkey. "Today, in conjunction with our partners ACWA, Air Products is developing the world’s largest industrial gas complex to supply 75,000 metric tons per day of oxygen and nitrogen to Saudi Aramco’s power station and refinery in Jazan, Saudi Arabia. The technology center is our latest step in demonstrating our long-term commitment to the Kingdom in developing local talent, technology and industrial gas projects in Saudi Arabia." - SG

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