US Dow Chemical to close four plants, cut 900 jobs in savings plan

02 April 2012 16:31  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--Dow chemical will cut around 900 jobs and close four plants over the next two years in an effort to save $250m annually in response to continued weak demand in the European economy, the US-based chemical major said on Monday.

The cost reduction will include closing certain manufacturing plants in Europe, North America and Latin America, as well as cancelling a selection of capital projects and implementing workforce reductions, the company said.

Dow will take charges totalling about $350m (€263m) for asset impairments, write-offs, severance and other costs related to these measures, it added.

“These actions, while difficult, are in full alignment with our commitment to continually manage our portfolio to adapt to changing and volatile economic conditions, as we are seeing particularly in western Europe, and to preferentially invest in our fast growing, technology rich businesses,” said Dow’s CEO Andrew Liveris.

Dow will shut down three plants that produce STYROFOAM brand insulation products located in Estarreja in Portugal, Balatonfuzfo in Hungary and Charleston in Illinois. The group will also idle a plant in Terneuzen, in the Netherlands.

The company added it will close its toluene diisocyanate (TDI) plant in Camacari, Brazil.

“In addition to these closures, the company will consolidate certain other assets in its polyurethanes and epoxy businesses, optimising their operations while remaining focused on meeting customer needs and sourcing through non-impacted assets,” the company said.

($1 = €0.75)

By: Leigh Stringer
+44 208 652 3214

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