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BASF PETRONAS Chemicals to close butanediol plant in Kuantan

BASF PETRONAS Chemicals to close butanediol plant in Kuantan
Photo courtesy of BASF

BASF PETRONAS Chemicals Sdn Bhd (BPC), a joint venture between Germany’s BASF and Malaysia’s PETRONAS Chemicals Group Berhad (PCG) said it will close its butanediol (BDO) and derivatives plant at Kuantan, Malaysia, as part of its product portfolio realignment.

The closure will take effect in March 2021, but will not impact other plants within the facility.

“As one of the leading companies in the business with BDO and derivatives, we are committed to continuous development in the BDO value chain. The recent measure is part of our strategy to ensure that we further improve our competitiveness in the markets where we add long-term value to both our customers’ businesses and to BASF, as well as BPC,” said Vasilios Galanos, senior vice president, Intermediates Asia Pacific, BASF.

“The decision to close the BDO plant will have long-term strategic benefits to BPC and its stakeholders, given the shift in business landscape as well as its unfavorable long term prospect. In line with PCG’s own expansion plans which include developing a specialty chemicals segment, we are looking forward to producing new high value products using advanced technologies. This would enable us to access to new markets and customers, thus further enhancing our growth for business sustainability,” said Datuk Sazali Hamzah, managing director and chief executive officer, PCG.

Last year, PETRONAS Chemicals acquired Da Vinci Group B.V, widely known as BRB. This acquisition marks PCG’s first foray into specialty chemicals. Da Vinci Group B.V. is a private limited liability company, incorporated in the Netherlands with global operations involving own-brand reselling, formulating and manufacturing of silicones, lube oil additives, and chemicals.

Marko Murtonen, managing director of BASF PETRONAS Chemicals, added: “This decision is also a result of significant overcapacities in the region due to recent investments into new coal-based BDO production sites. BPC is reaching out to all customers to support a smooth transition and we will continue to serve our customers in the region with other products from BPC. In addition, BPC will work closely and provide assistance to our impacted employees in this transition period,” said BDO and its derivatives are essential chemical materials for the production of engineering plastics, polyurethanes, solvents and elastic spandex fibers.

About BASF PETRONAS Chemicals Sdn. Bhd.

BASF PETRONAS Chemicals Sdn. Bhd. is a Malaysia-based joint venture between BASF and Petroliam Nasional Berhad (PETRONAS), Malaysia’s fully integrated oil and gas multinational, under its subsidiary PETRONAS Chemicals Group Berhad (PCG). Incorporated in 1997, the company operates an integrated ‘Verbund’ site situated in the Gebeng Industrial Zone, Pahang. The company’s share capital is 60% held by BASF and 40% held by PCG. Key products include acrylic monomers, oxo products, butanediol, 2-ethylhexanoic acid, highly reactive polyisobutene and aroma ingredients.

For more information, visit www.basf-petronas.com.my.