Kraton Performance Polymers Inc. recently announced that it plans to expand hydrogenated styrenic block copolymer (HSBC) manufacturing capability in Asia on a stand-alone basis. Locations in the region, including those in China that were identified during the company’s site selection process conducted in 2010 and early 2011, will reportedly be the primary areas of focus.

Kraton did not extend the previously announced Framework Agreement between the company and Formosa Petrochemical Corp., which has expired. The expired agreement had governed the formation of a proposed 50/50 joint venture to build, own and operate a 30 kiloton HSBC plant at FPCC’s petrochemical site in Mailiao, Taiwan.  

“Given the importance of the HSBC expansion in Kraton’s future growth plans, we are pleased to announce we are moving forward with a stand-alone HSBC expansion project in the Asia Pacific region,” said Kevin M. Fogarty, president and CEO. “We believe a significant amount of the engineering and design work conducted to date will be applicable to the alternate location. Moreover, given our significant liquidity and the strength of our balance sheet, we are well-positioned to develop and fund the project on a stand-alone basis.”

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