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Celanese and SABIC Announce Polyacetal Expansion in Middle East

April 01, 2010
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Celanese Corporation and Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC) today announced their National Methanol Co. (Ibn Sina) joint venture will construct a 50,000 ton polyacetal (POM) production facility in Saudi Arabia, according to Business Wire. The investment supports accelerated future growth plans for Celanese’s Advanced Engineered Materials segment, specifically its Ticona Engineering Polymers business, as it delivers innovative solutions for POM customers; and SABIC, in support of its regional business development. Engineering and construction of the facility is expected to begin later this year. Construction of the facility is part of an extension of the Ibn Sina joint venture, which will now run through 2032. Ibn Sina produces methanol, a key feedstock for POM production, as well as methyl tertiary-butyl ether (MTBE). Through Ibn Sina, Celanese strengthens its raw material and energy positions. Celanese, SABIC and Duke Energy Corporation entered into the Ibn Sina joint venture in 1981. Celanese and an affiliate of Duke Energy each hold a 25 percent interest in the venture, with the remaining 50 percent held by SABIC. Upon successful startup of the POM facility, Celanese’s economic interest in Ibn Sina will increase from 25 percent to a total of 32.5 percent, providing further financial benefits for Celanese. SABIC’s economic interest will remain unchanged. Over the past three years, Celanese has received approximately $238 million in dividends from the venture. Total invested capital in the project is expected to be approximately $400 million.

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