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Huntsman to Significantly Expand Its Global MDI Manufacturing Capacity

Published on 2005-03-15. Author : SpecialChem

THE WOODLANDS, Texas -- Huntsman Corporation (NYSE: HUN - News) announced that it will significantly increase its global capacity for the manufacture of methylene diphenyl diisocyanate (MDI).

The initiative involves expansions at the company's two major MDI manufacturing facilities located in Geismar, Louisiana and Rozenburg, Netherlands. The capacity of the Geismar plant will be expanded by 130 million pounds per year to 990 million pounds per year, while the capacity of the Rozenburg plant will be expanded by 220 million pounds per year to 880 million pounds per year. The capacity expansions will be completed in increments beginning in the first quarter of 2005, with final completion expected by late 2006. Total capital spending in 2005 for these projects is included in Huntsman's previously disclosed $400 million total capital budget for 2005.

These expansions are in addition to Huntsman's previously announced investment in an MDI joint venture project in Caojing, Shanghai, China, which is due to come on stream in mid-2006 and will provide an additional 265 million pounds per year of MDI.

Following the completion of the Geismar and Rozenburg expansions and the Caojing joint venture project, Huntsman's total MDI manufacturing capacity is expected to exceed 2.1 billion pounds per year.

"Strong demand for MDI in all regions, but particularly in Asia, has prompted these capacity increases" said Polyurethanes Division President, Tony Hankins. "Huntsman has a leading global position in the production and supply of MDI and is committed to the long term growth of the industry. Inherent in that commitment is the assurance to our customers that we will continue to invest in new capacity and supply them with the high quality products they need to expand their own businesses."

Huntsman is a global manufacturer and marketer of commodity and differentiated chemicals. Its operating companies manufacture basic products for a variety of global industries including chemicals, plastics, automotive, aviation, footwear, paints and coatings, construction, technology, agriculture, health care, textiles, detergent, personal care, furniture, appliances and packaging. Originally known for pioneering innovations in packaging, and later, rapid and integrated growth in petrochemicals, Huntsman today has revenues of $11.5 billion, 11,300 employees and 62 operations in 22 countries.

Statements in this release that are not historical are forward-looking statements. These statements are based on management's current beliefs and expectations. The forward-looking statements in this release are subject to uncertainty and changes in circumstances and involve risks and uncertainties that may affect the company's operations, markets, products, services, prices and other factors as discussed in the Huntsman companies' filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Significant risks and uncertainties may relate to, but are not limited to, financial, economic, competitive, environmental, political, legal, regulatory and technological factors. Accordingly, there can be no assurance that the company's expectations will be realized. The company assumes no obligation to provide revisions to any forward-looking statements should circumstances change, except as otherwise required by securities and other applicable laws.

Source: Huntsman

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