Trader and tanker owner Trafigura Group is forming a new joint venture to trade petrochemicals.

The focus will be on bulk liquid chemicals, it said.

The venture has been set up with "senior executives from the petrochemical trading industry", including the current management team of Altis Group International.

Altis will continue to trade from Houston, while the new Altis International (Singapore) will have a branch office in Geneva.

Trafigura's Tom Jay, who is a director of the new venture, said: “We believe that the time is right to start exploring the potential of this market.

“The market for petrochemicals is expected to grow significantly over the next few years, with Altis well placed to capture a share of this market by bringing an experienced team combined with Trafigura’s global footprint, resources and infrastructure to connect buyers with sellers.”