German chemical manufacturer BASF plans to spend more than $200 million to boost its worldwide plastic additives business, with a portion of the investment slated for the company’s plant in southwestern Alabama.
At the Washington County facility in McIntosh, BASF will expand production capacity in a move that is expected to strengthen the company’s North American manufacturing footprint.
BASF is the leading global manufacturer and supplier of plastic additives. It also is a key player in Alabama’s chemical industry, which contributes nearly $2 billion annually to the state’s $157 billion GDP.The industry includes more than 200 chemical companies, which employ more than 9,000 workers in the state.
Many large petrochemical companies have built new plants and expanded operations in North America, a trend driven by low-priced natural gas feedstock.
BASF’s new investment aligns with announced expansions by existing and new polyolefin producers in North America, which significantly increases production capacity in the market. Polyolefin is a material used in plastics, consumer goods, industrial products and food packaging.
“To us, this is a clear signal of our customers’ commitment to growth in the region,” said Anup Kothari, senior vice president at BASF Performance Chemicals. “The close proximity of our McIntosh site to our customers’ plants places us in an ideal position to fuel their growth.”
The investment in McIntosh will expand the production capacity of light stabilizers, namely the Tinuvin product line.
Tinuvin UV absorbers (UVAs) prevent degradation of both plastics and coatings by filtering out harmful UV radiation. BASF’s capital investment to increase the production capacity of benzotriazoles (BTZs), in particular, will better serve the global needs of its customers in plastics and coatings.
Meanwhile, the company continues to focus on safety, quality and reliability, Kothari added.
“We are well-positioned to remain the trusted and reliable supplier of additives to our customers,” he said.
BASF’s Plastic Additives business has manufacturing sites in Mexico, Germany, Italy, Switzerland, Bahrain, China and Singapore, in addition to its U.S. locations.