Chemical company Ineos has entered into an agreement to supply ethane from U.S. shale gas to the Fife Ethylene Plant in Mossmorran, Scotland, starting in mid-2017.

The facility will receive ethane from Ineos’ new import terminal in Grangemouth, Scotland, under a long-term sale and purchase agreement between Ineos Europe AG, ExxonMobil Chemical Ltd. and Shell Chemicals Europe B.V.

The Fife plant is owned and operated by ExxonMobil, while Shell has 50 percent capacity rights.

Ineos said last week that access to this new source of feedstock will help complement supplies from North Sea natural gas fields. The agreement will also ensure the competitiveness of a major manufacturing facility in Scotland.

“This is a landmark agreement for everyone involved,” commented Geir Tuft, business director at Ineos O&P UK. “We know that ethane from U.S. shale gas has transformed U.S. manufacturing, and we are now seeing this advantage being shared across Scotland.”

Elise Nowee, Shell Chemicals’ general manager of base chemicals in Europe, said that the deal brings “U.S. advantaged ethane” to the Fife plant and will help meet the long-term needs of its ethylene customers.

Ineos has committed £450 million ($679 million) to construct its ethane import terminal and storage facility at Grangemouth. The storage tank is designed to hold more than 60,000 cubic meters of ethane imported from the United States to help replace declining North Sea supplies.

An existing pipeline will transport the gas from Grangemouth to Fife.