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Feasibility study for a new super absorbent polymers plant
30
Mar '11
BASF and PETRONAS will commence a feasibility study for a new plant for superabsorbent polymers. The companies have also decided to look into the expansion of the existing production capacities of their joint venture BASF PETRONAS Chemicals Sdn Bhd.

“Our joint venture BASF PETRONAS Chemicals plays an important role for us in achieving our Asia Pacific Strategy for 2020. With this investment in high-growth specialty chemicals, we will position ourselves even better to serve our customers in Asia,” said Dr. Martin Brudermüller, Member of the Board of Executive Directors, BASF SE, responsible for Asia Pacific. “With this capacity expansion and extension into superabsorbent polymers we extract further potential of our acrylics value chain in BASF PETRONAS Chemicals.”

Datuk Wan Zulkiflee Wan Ariffin, Executive Vice President of Downstream Business, PETRONAS said, “The future of petrochemical industry will be shaped by changes in global mega-trends such as growing health awareness resulting in strong growth in demand for specialty chemicals including superabsorbent polymers for personal hygiene application. The success of our joint venture with BASF has provided us the confidence to look for further collaboration opportunities into higher value adding portfolio and position PETRONAS to be a key player in petrochemicals in the region.”

The new investment will be part of BASF PETRONAS Chemicals Sdn Bhd, founded by BASF and PETRONAS in 1997. The company currently operates an integrated complex situated at the Gebeng Industrial Zone, Pahang. The company's share of capital is 60% held by BASF and 40% by PETRONAS with a total investment of about RM3.4 billion for production facilities for acrylic monomers, oxo products and butanediol.

Superabsorbent polymers are materials with the ability to absorb and retain large volumes of water and aqueous solutions. They are made from partially neutralised, lightly cross-linked poly acrylic acid and are the key ingredients in disposable diapers, feminine hygiene and adult incontinence products. They are also used in cable insulation, potting soils and professional compost mixes, food packaging, and medical waste disposal.

BASF, The Chemical Company

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