​QatarEnergy and Chevron Phillips Chemical (CPChem) have broken ground on the $8.5bn Golden Triangle polymers plant in Orange County, Texas, US.

Scheduled to begin operations in 2026, the petrochemicals facility will comprise an ethylene cracker unit with a capacity of 2.08 million tons per annum (Mtpa).

It will also feature two high-density polyethylene units which, put together, will have a production capacity of two million tonnes per annum.

The Golden Triangle polymers plant will be owned by Golden Triangle Polymers, a joint venture between QatarEnergy (49%) and CPChem (51%).

QatarEnergy surface development and sustainability executive vice-president Ahmad Saeed Al-Amoodi said: “For over two decades, we have worked hand in hand with Chevron Phillips Chemical to satisfy the growing demand for innovative petrochemical products, which not only constitute a significant portion of our daily lives, but also play a role in shaping how we live.

“In this partnership, we are also working together to enable balanced growth and to facilitate human development in a responsible and sustainable manner.”

CPChem will oversee the project’s planning, procurement, and construction.

The project is expected to create approximately 4,500 construction jobs and over 500 jobs once operational.

The project’s polyethylene output will primarily be marketed to customers in Asia, Europe, and Latin America.

QatarEnergy said that the Golden Triangle project marks its second biggest investment in the US, after the more than $11bn investment in the Golden Pass liquefied natural gas (LNG) production and export facility, which is under construction in Sabine Pass, Texas.

In December 2022, Technip Energies secured a €250m contract to deliver modularised cracking furnaces for the ethane cracker at the Golden Triangle Polymers project.