BASF has decided to establish a wholly-owned world-scale production base for water treatment and paper chemicals in Nanjing, China, with the construction of a 40,000 t/a quaternized cationic monomers plant and a 20,000 t/a cationic polyacrylamides plant.
The two BASF plants, which are designed to high international standards of safety and energy efficiency, are expected to start up production in the third quarter of 2012. They mark the first Asian manufacturing of these products for BASF.
"This investment underlines our long-term commitment to China both in economic and environmental terms," said Dr. Albert Heuser, President Market and Business Development Asia Pacific. "The establishment of these plants is part of our growth strategy for Asia Pacific to double our sales by 2020 while contributing to a sustainable future."
Cationic monomers are a key feedstock for cationic polyacrylamides. Cationic polyacrylamides are used as organic flocculants in the water treatment industry and as retention aids in the paper industry.
The water treatment and papermaking industries are growing at a high rate in Asia, particularly in China. This is a result of substantial investment in water treatment infrastructure and strongly increasing paper consumption, fuelled by high growth in regional GDP.
"We are one of the leading suppliers to the water treatment industry with a strong platform for future growth in a very attractive market. This investment is our long-term response to the growing demand from our customers in Asia," said Hans W. Reiners, President Performance Chemicals division, which also includes BASF's Water Solutions business. "Nanjing is an ideal location for such an investment as it offers BASF a high degree of backward integration", Reiners added.
" Following our recent announcement of plans to build a plant for XSB dispersions in Huizhou, South China, this investment further demonstrates our commitment to the fast-growing paper industry in emerging Asia, especially in China. Our ability to produce within the region will underpin our supply reliability and the success of our customers," said EngSoo Chew, Senior Vice President Paper Chemicals Asia Pacific.
The plants will be built according to BASF's high global standards of safety and environmental protection. This process for planning a plant is laid down in a binding guideline that is valid throughout the BASF Group. The five-step review system for environmental protection, health and safety (EHS reviews) covers all aspects of process safety, occupational health and environmental protection. Furthermore, BASF places particular importance on training its safety experts worldwide to implement the same high safety standards in all its production facilities.