Basell announced today that it will increase its polypropylene production capacity in Australia by 60,000 tonnes per year with an expansion project at its Geelong plant.
“This is an important step that will enable Basell to remain a competitive leader in the polypropylene industry,” said Barry Kelly, managing director of Basell Australia. “Basell is committed to continuously reviewing and rejuvenating its asset base. Low volume manufacturing plants cannot compete in the long term in the Asia Pacific region.”
The planned increase, scheduled to be completed in the first quarter of 2006, will put the Geelong plant’s capacity at 130,000 tonnes per year. It is expected that 50 jobs will be created during the construction phase of the project.
“The Geelong site has been progressively modernised over the last three years and our employees have a good track record in operating the plant safely and effectively,” said David Stannard, the plant manager. “This was a positive factor in the expansion decision.”
Basell and its predecessor companies have been manufacturing polypropylene in Australia for more than three decades. Currently, Basell Australia employs 170 people in total in its Australian operations, which include plants in Sydney and Geelong. Polypropylene is a versatile plastic and is used in making many household, consumer and industrial goods. Examples include banknotes, food and drink containers, home appliances, garden furniture, stadium seating, and vehicle components such as bumper bars and instrument panels.
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