Camaçari, Brazil – June 19, 2015 – BASF today inaugurated its world-scale production complex for acrylic acid, butyl acrylate and superabsorbent polymers in Camaçari, Bahia, Brazil. These are the first plants for acrylic acid and superabsorbent polymers in South America. The complex has a capacity of 160,000 tons of acrylic acid per year. The investment of more than €500 million is the largest in BASF’s more than century-long history in South America.
“BASF is the global leader in the acrylic acid value chain. This major investment will further strengthen our position in the growing South American market,” said Michael Heinz, member of the Board of Executive Directors of BASF SE and responsible for South America.
Superabsorbent polymers are important products in the acrylic acid value chain and are used in the production of baby diapers and other hygiene products. Butyl acrylate, another important derivative of acrylic acid, is used to produce adhesives, construction chemicals and decorative paints.
“This complex will secure national and regional supply of products that are currently imported,” said Ralph Schweens, President of BASF in South America. “In addition, it will positively impact the local economy by encouraging investment and innovation in the region and attracting new companies to the Camaçari industrial area,” he added.
Brazilian employees trained in the U.S., Belgium and China
The construction of the new complex started in March 2012. The three plants at the complex have created 230 direct jobs and 600 indirect jobs in the region. BASF is setting the highest quality standards in Brazil, after recently having started up similar plants for acrylic acid and superabsorbent polymers in Nanjing, China. Brazilian employees were trained at BASF sites in the United States, Belgium and China and are now bringing their expertise to South America.
In addition to the new Camaçari complex, BASF will convert its butyl acrylate plant at its existing site in Guaratinguetá near São Paulo to produce 2-ethylhexyl acrylate, an important raw material for the adhesive and coatings industries. This will be the first plant of its kind in South America. Production is expected to start in 2016 and will be based on acrylic acid produced in Camaçari.
At BASF, we create chemistry – and have been doing so for 150 years. Our portfolio ranges from chemicals, plastics, performance products and crop protection products to oil and gas. As the world’s leading chemical company, we combine economic success with environmental protection and social responsibility. Through science and innovation, we enable our customers in nearly every industry to meet the current and future needs of society. Our products and solutions contribute to conserving resources, ensuring nutrition and improving quality of life. We have summed up this contribution in our corporate purpose: We create chemistry for a sustainable future. BASF had sales of over €74 billion in 2014 and around 113,000 employees as of the end of the year. BASF shares are traded on the stock exchanges in Frankfurt (BAS), London (BFA) and Zurich (AN). Further information on BASF is available on the Internet at www.basf.com.