Kuwait/Dow JV being reconsidered - report

26 November 2008 17:32  [Source: ICIS news]

Lightning over a Dow plantHOUSTON (ICIS news)--Kuwait Petroleum Corp is reconsidering its massive joint venture (JV) with Dow Chemical in light of the global economic crisis, Kuwait’s state news agency reported on Wednesday, but a Dow spokesman said it was on track to close the deal.

State news agency KUNA quoted KPC CEO Saad Al-Shuwaib as saying, “The Supreme Petroleum Council [SPC] has recently urged reconsideration of the project in the light of the current global financial crisis.”

"Negotiations are underway between KPC and Dow on the impacts of the international financial crisis on the joint venture," Al-Shuwaib was quoted as saying.

However, Dow spokesman David Winder said, “Talks are ongoing with our Kuwaiti partners and remain on track to close the K-Dow transaction by the end of the year.”

Winder would not comment on the specifics of the Kuwait media report.

Part of Dow’s “asset light” strategy to reduce its exposure to the commodity chemicals market, Dow and KPC unit Petroleum Industries Co (PIC) announced the joint venture late last year. Dow would sell PIC a 50% share in five of its global businesses worth about $19bn (€15bn) and PIC will pay the US company $9.5bn.

The joint venture would will manufacture and market polyethylene (PE), ethylenamines, ethanolamines, polypropylene (PP) and polycarbonate (PC).

The JV was expected to have revenues of more than $11bn and employ more than 5,000 people worldwide,” Dow said.

($1 = €0.77)

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By: Brian Ford
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