BASF gets green light for new chemical plant in China

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The world's biggest chemical group, BASF, said Friday it has won approval from Chinese authorities to invest 860 million euros ($1.2 billion) in a new plant near Chongqing.

The site in central China is to produce up to 400,000 tonnes of MDI per year from 2014, a statement said in reference to diphenylmethane diisocyanate, an organic compound used to produce polyurethane foams.

They are widely used in insulation, construction, household appliances and transportation.

A location in China "will give us access to what will be one of the biggest MDI markets in the world," the statement quoted BASF's Asian director Martin Brudermueller as saying.

BASF has another Chinese site that produces MDI in the province of Shanghai and the German group employs around 7,000 people in the country, to which another 300 are to be added in Chongqing.

Sales in China came to 5.8 billion euros last year, and BASF plans to invest more than one billion euros in the country by 2014.

© 2011 AFP

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