New line affirms Braskem's position as North America's Premier Polypropylene Producer
LA PORTE, Texas and PHILADELPHIA, Sept. 10, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Braskem (B3: BRKM3, BRKM5 and BRKM6; NYSE: BAK; LATIBEX: XBRK), the largest polyolefins producer in the Americas and leading producer of biopolymers in the world, today announces the successful launch of commercial production at its newest, world-class polypropylene production line located in La Porte, Texas.
Braskem's new line has a production capacity of over 450 kilotons (kt) or 1 billion pounds per year and has the capability to produce the entire polypropylene portfolio including a broad range of products including homopolymer, impact copolymer and random copolymers. Construction began October 2017 with the final phase of mechanical construction completed in June 2020. The launch of commercial production follows the successful completion of the commissioning process as well as the achievement of Braskem's high product quality assurance protocols.
Mark Nikolich, Braskem America CEO, states, "The launch of commercial production at our new world class polypropylene production line in La Porte clearly affirms Braskem's position as the North American polypropylene market leader. Our investment of $750 million in the largest polypropylene production line in the Americas, and the first new polypropylene plant in North America since 2008, reflects our enduring commitment to meeting the needs of our clients today and for the long-term. With the upcoming launch of our new Global Export Hub in Charleston, South Carolina, we'll significantly increase our ability to serve clients throughout North America, South America, Europe, and Asia with our newly expanded U.S. production capability. I would also like to personally thank the entire Braskem team, as well as our design and construction partners, on delivering this milestone project amid a challenging COVID-19 environment. Our team member safety is always our top priority and their exceptional performance throughout the project is a true testament to their commitment to professional excellence."
The construction of the facility has positively affected the economy in the Texas Gulf Coast region, which employed approximately 1,300 development and construction workers. An additional 50 Braskem permanent full-time jobs were created to support long-term commercial production. The plant design was developed directly in-line with Braskem's commitment to sustainability and attention to eco-indicators such as emissions, water and energy efficiency, as well as recycling and waste reduction. For additional information on Braskem's new production line, please visit online at www.braskem.com/usa/delta.
"The startup of our new production line comes at a time when the North American polypropylene industry needs it most. The market has adapted to the COVID pandemic and demand in North America has recovered to pre-COVID levels. This demand, coupled with recent operating challenges in the industry, has created a situation where clients in North America need our support. We are excited to bring the new production capability to clients not only in North America, but also to international clients," commented Alexandre Elias, Vice President, Polypropylene North America.
In June of 2020 Braskem America announced the development of its new Global Export Hub Facility in Charleston, South Carolina to better serve clients internationally from the U.S. market. The new Global Export Hub facility will provide packaging, warehousing and export shipping services to support Braskem's U.S. polypropylene production facilities. With the design and development phase well underway, the new Global Export Hub is expected to be completed by the third quarter of 2020 and will have a capacity to support export shipments of up to 450 million pounds (204 Kilotons) of polypropylene and specialty polymers annually to Braskem customers worldwide. The Port of Charleston features daily express intermodal and merchandise rail services and more than 20 ocean carriers delivering export cargo between Charleston and more than 150 nations around the world.
To support the sustainable use of polypropylene through the development of, and investment in, the Circular Economy, Braskem America recently became a founding member and funding partner of the Polypropylene Recycling Coalition, with a primary focus on increasing U.S polypropylene recovery and reuse.
The Polypropylene Recycling Coalition, an initiative with The Recycling Partnership, is a collaboration to improve the U.S. polypropylene recycling infrastructure with a focus on increasing curbside recycling access for polypropylene to ensure this critical packaging material is widely recovered and reused in end-markets including food and beverage packaging, consumer products and automotive parts. The coalition makes funding grants available to support community curbside recycling programs to local governments, solid waste authorities, and federally recognized tribes. To learn more about the Polypropylene Recycling Coalition, the founding members, and how to join, visit recyclingpartnership.org/polypropylene-coalition. For additional information about Braskem's circular economy position please visit online at www.braskem.com/circulareconomy.
With a global vision of the future oriented towards people and sustainability, Braskem is committed to contributing to the value chain for strengthening the Circular Economy. The petrochemical company's almost 8,000 team members dedicate themselves every day to improve people's lives through sustainable chemicals and plastics solutions. Braskem has an innovative DNA and a comprehensive portfolio of plastic resins and chemical products for diverse segments, such as food packaging, construction, manufacturing, automotive, agribusiness, healthcare and hygiene, among others. With 41 industrial units in Brazil, the United States, Mexico and Germany, and net revenue of R$52.3 billion (US$13.2 billion), Braskem exports its products to clients in more than 100 countries.
Braskem America is an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of Braskem S.A. headquartered in Philadelphia. The company is the leading producer of polypropylene in the United States, with six production plants located in Texas, Pennsylvania and West Virginia, an Innovation and Technology Center in Pittsburgh, and operations in Boston focused on leveraging groundbreaking developments in biotechnology and advanced materials. For more information, visit www.braskem.com/usa.
FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENTS
This press release contains projections and other forward-looking statements (within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended) regarding future events. These statements reflect Braskem's current beliefs and expectations with respect to Braskem's business, the economy and other future conditions and are based on assumptions, are subject to risk and uncertainties and are subject to change at any time. Actual events or results may differ materially from those contained in such forward-looking statements. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking statements contained herein include, without limitation: (i) the continuation of restrictions related to the COVID -19 Pandemic or the continuing effects of the Pandemic; (ii) the contraction or lack of growth in the market segments in which Braskem competes and in which its products are sold (ii) unexpected delays in commissioning, (iii) increased competition from imports or in the export markets, (iv) inability to anticipate future market trends and the future needs of Braskem's customers, (v) the impact of natural disasters on Braskem's La Porte facility and its suppliers and (vi) other factors detailed in documents Braskem files from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Forward-looking statements in this release are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions contained in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.
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