Braskem completes construction of polypropylene production facility in Texas
The new facility in La Porte has a designed production capacity of over 1 billion pounds per year, with full-scale commercial production activity currently expected in the third quarter of 2020.
Polyolefins and biopolymers producer Braskem has finished construction of its newest polypropylene production facility located in La Porte, Texas.
Braskem’s new facility has a designed production capacity of over 450 kilotons (kt) or 1 billion pounds per year and has the capability to produce the entire polypropylene portfolio including a broad range of polypropylene products including homopolymer, impact copolymer and random copolymers. The construction of the facility created approximately 1,300 development and construction workers to build the facility. An additional 50 Braskem permanent full-time jobs were created to support long-term commercial production.
“As commercial production begins later this year, Braskem will position the new facility’s domestic production capabilities to replace imported polypropylene volumes, which are currently addressing the shortfall in the United States’ domestic market,” Mark Nikolich, Braskem America CEO, said in a statement. “Commercial production activity at the facility, in conjunction with our new global export hub in Charleston, South Carolina, will also directly support Braskem’s global export capability to its clients throughout North America, South America, Europe, and Asia.”
Initial production test runs are expected to start in the next month with the first full-scale commercial production activity currently expected in the third quarter of 2020.
“The COVID impact on the North American polypropylene industry during April and May affected durable segments such as automotive,” said Alexandre Elias, Braskem’s vice president, polypropylene North America. “However, this impact was partially mitigated with strong sales in nonwovens and packaging applications. In June, demand improved and Braskem’s North American polypropylene outlook for the third quarter is positive as clients are ramping up operations and demand has rebounded. The combination of improved demand, planned outages in the third quarter, and export opportunities will support a smooth ramp up of the new facility.”