Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (Sabic), a leading player in the petrochemical sector, has secured a US$435mn loan structured and arranged by HSBC and guaranteed by Sace.

The loan will be used for the Saudi Iron & Steel Company (Hadeed) expansion project in Saudi Arabia’s Jubail Industrial City.

As part of this expansion project, Italian steel group Danieli will supply a plant producing half-processed steel products. Production is expected to commence in the second half of 2012.

The loan agreement was signed by Sabic’s CFO Mutlaq Al-Morished in Rome on February 1.

According to a statement issued by Sace, the Italian ECA’s support of this loan confirms its “commitment to sustaining the competitiveness of Italian firms at a time of market uncertainty, covering risks to strengthen the capabilities of the banking system to fund major projects involving Italian enterprises”.

In 2004, Sace guaranteed a US$68mn loan to the Danieli Group won to produce steel products in the Hadeed compound.