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ACETEX ANNOUNCES $1 BILLION EXPANSION PROJECT
Acetex Corp. has announced the finalization of definitive joint venture agreements with National Petrochemical Industrialization Co. regarding the construction of world class acetic acid, vinyl acetate monomer (VAM) and methanol projects to be established in Jubail, Saudi Arabia. Once completed, the project will extend Acetex's global acetyls position as well as establish Acetex as the lowest cost supplier of acetyls into the Far East market. The projects will benefit from the favorable natural gas supply as well as from Acetex's proprietary integration technology for the co-production of acetic acid and methanol. It is anticipated that this technology will reduce investment by more than U.S. $100 million, as well as reduce operating costs. The projects will be located at the petrochemical complex site of TASNEE Petrochemicals (an affiliate of National Industrialization Co.) in Jubail Industrial City, Saudi Arabia, with an annual production capacity of approximately 500,000 tons of acetic acid, 275,000 tons of VAM and 1.8 million tons of methanol. Acetex, in cooperation with TASNEE Petrochemicals, will be responsible for the marketing of the acetyls products and will integrate this new business with the existing acetyls business into one global marketing organization.