US' Kraton to proceed with Asia capacity expansion sans FPCC

04 October 2012 07:48  [Source: ICIS news]

SINGAPORE (ICIS)--Kraton Performance Polymers plans to pursue expansion of its hydrogenated-styrenic-block copolymers (HSBC) capacity in Asia without Taiwan’s Formosa Petrochemical Corp (FPCC), the US-based firm said late on Wednesday.

The US firm is now looking at building an HSBC plant in the region, other than Mailiao following delays in securing the necessary regulatory approval for its proposed joint venture project with FPCC, it said in a statement.

“Locations in the region, including those in China, which were identified during the company's site selection process conducted in 2010 and early 2011, will be the primary areas of focus,” Kraton added.

“It is not possible to estimate with certainty either the project cost or the time-line for completion at an alternate stand-alone location,” the company said.

Those under consideration are within existing industrial sites, where Kraton should have access to existing infrastructure and utilities to save on overall project expenditure, it said.

Kraton’s framework agreement with FPCC signed in March this year on building a 30,000 tonne/year hydrogenated-styrenic-block copolymer plant in Mailiao, Taiwan, had expired on 30 September, the US firm said, adding that the deal was not extended.

“Progress on the HSBC [hydrogenated-styrenic-block copolymer] joint venture project had been significantly delayed, while FPCC waited initially for environmental permit approval, and subsequently while FPCC sought resolution regarding conditions on which the permit was finally approved in July 2012,” Kraton said.

“FPCC considered the conditions to be too restrictive and limiting on its overall operation in Mailiao, Taiwan,” it said.

($1 = €0.78)

By: Nurluqman Suratman

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