Sector News

Abu Dhabi’s Mubadala invests in Australia’s largest urea project

May 11, 2024
Energy & Chemical Value Chain

Abu Dhabi sovereign investor Mubadala has joined Global Infrastructure Partners to invest in industrial chemical producer Perdaman’s $4.2bn (AUD6.4bn) Western Australia Urea project, one of the largest urea fertiliser facilities in the world.

Mubadala said the transaction represents the largest investment ever made in the Australian fertiliser industry, without disclosing its value. The facility is expected to produce more than two million tonnes of urea a year.

“Mubadala is delighted to diversify our growing portfolio with the investment into Perdaman’s world-class urea project in Australia. The investment aligns with Mubadala’s responsible investing mandate, supporting national and regional food security ambitions while reducing the carbon footprint of urea production,” said Saed Arar, the Abu Dhabi fund’s executive director of Traditional Infrastructure.

The plant will incorporate the latest technology to ensure optimised energy efficiency and low emissions.

Similarly, it will adopt clean technologies such as solar energy and green hydrogen to minimise industrial emissions and lower the carbon footprint of fertiliser production, with Perdaman committed to making the plant net zero by 2050.

The project will address the rising demand for high-quality fertilisers while reducing Australia’s reliance on imports. It will also provide food security to around 90 million people.

Perdaman commenced operations at the urea plant, with the help of a AUD2.1bn equity investment from Global Infrastructure Partners in April 2023.

The company aims to produce 2.3 million tonnes of urea annually at a site near Karratha in Australia’s northwest, around half of which is destined for Asia, Brazil and the US. Urea is an organic chemical typically used to make fertilisers.

Meanwhile, Mubadala is the second-biggest state fund in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the UAE after the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority.

The $276bn sovereign fund plans to deploy significant capital into artificial intelligence and space technology this year, as it seeks to transform itself from an asset investor to an enabler of global progress.

By Kudakwashe Muzoriwa

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