The world largest publicly listed oil and gas producer ExxonMobil will be embarking on a $20bn (£16.3bn) investment plan aimed at expanding its petrochemical and oil refining plant on the US Gulf Coast, according to the company's relatively new Chief Executive Darren Woods.

Speaking at CERAWeek in Houston, Texas, USA on Monday (6 March), Woods, who succeeded the company's veteran CEO Rex Tillerson after the latter was appointed US Secretary of State by President Donald Trump, said the investment would target 11 sites across Texas and Louisiana by 2022.

It carries the potential to create 35,000 temporary construction jobs and 12,000 permanent jobs.

The refining projects would take advantage of cheap shale gas feedstock to make plastics and petrochemicals for export.

ExxonMobil will also increase its lubricant manufacturing capacity and "potentially build" a new refinery to produce ethane, a key building block for chemical production.

"ExxonMobil's aim is to build a manufacturing powerhouse along the US Gulf Coast. These businesses are leveraging the shale revolution to manufacture cleaner fuels and more energy-efficient plastics. The supply is here. The demand is there. We want to keep connecting those dots," Woods said.

Donald Trump has endorsed ExxonMobil investment plan as an example of "a true American success story."

"This is exactly the kind of investment, economic development and job creation that will help put Americans back to work," Trump said.