UPDATE 1-Dow Chemical to build specialty plants on U.S. Gulf Coast

Mon Mar 18, 2013 9:39am EDT

* Looks to tap cheaper shale gas in North America

* Expects plants to employ up to 3,000 workers at construction peak

March 18 (Reuters) - Dow Chemical Co said it plans to build several specialty material production plants on the U.S. Gulf Coast to take advantage of cheap shale-derived natural gas.

Margins in Dow's performance plastics business have been squeezed in Europe and Asia as the company uses more-expensive crude oil-derived naphtha to make some plastics in these regions.

In contrast, margins in North America have improved as the biggest U.S. chemical maker uses cheap natural gas in the region.

The plants will employ up to 3,000 workers at construction peak, the company said, without specifying how much it intends to invest.

The facilities will manufacture materials for several of Dow's fastest growing market segments, including packaging, hygiene and medical, electrical and telecommunications, transportation, sports and leisure and consumer durables, the company said.

"These moves directly support Dow's transformational strategy to create additional competitive advantage for Dow's performance businesses by expanding access to advantaged natural gas-based feedstocks," the company said in a statement.

Dow said it was exploring specific location options on the U.S. Gulf Coast, and that the final locations would be determined at a later date.

Dow also said on Monday that it had reached an initial agreement to provide ethylene supplies to a petrochemical plant on the U.S. Gulf Coast, being developed by Japanese oil refiner Idemitsu Kosan and trading house Mitsui & Co.

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Comments (2)
bravo9304 wrote:
I start to Ouestion these companys that are willing to build Chemical companys where the weather and flooding and earthquacks,tornado,sinkholes and sea rise are at risk of happening and can cousing more enviromental damage. And if your going to do this at least build the new tunnels first so that we can start on solide dry ground.Just like Sandy on the eastcoust the tunnel program can take the water away from citys and towns and put it where you need it and stops damage. Thats where new jobs are and it will propare use for things to come. And same thing goes for oil and gas pipelines put them in the tunnels because its safe and a controled area. Hope somebody is lisening. It time to do things right and it pays for itself in the long run. Rod Bravender The Majestic lion. SEYA

Mar 18, 2013 8:10pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
bravo9304 wrote:
I start to Ouestion these companys that are willing to build Chemical companys where the weather and flooding and earthquacks,tornado,sinkholes and sea rise are at risk of happening and can cousing more enviromental damage. And if your going to do this at least build the new tunnels first so that we can start on solide dry ground.Just like Sandy on the eastcoust the tunnel program can take the water away from citys and towns and put it where you need it and stops damage. Thats where new jobs are and it will propare use for things to come. And same thing goes for oil and gas pipelines put them in the tunnels because its safe and a controled area. Hope somebody is lisening. It time to do things right and it pays for itself in the long run. Rod Bravender The Majestic lion. SEYA

Mar 18, 2013 8:15pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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