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BASF Expands Global PolyTHF® Capacity

Germany-based specialty chemicals and intermediates manufacturer BASF SE has invested more than 60 million euros to increase its global capacity for the production of polytetramethylene ether glycol by 65,000 metric tons. Annual capacity for the chemical intermediate, marketed under the brand name PolyTHF®, now totals 250,000 metric tons.

PolyTHF is used primarily as a raw material for the production of spandex fibers for stretchable fabrics. It also is a basis for thermoplastic polyurethanes used to make hoses, films and cable sheathing; and for thermoplastic polyetheresters, polyetheramides and cast elastomers used to make wheels for skateboards and inline skates.

BASF has been producing PolyTHF since 1983,\ and is the only global supplier of the chemical intermediate, which it produces in Germany, South Korea, China, and Geismar, La. BASF reports its has modernized and enhanced the efficiency of the sites to ensure an adequate raw material supply for producing PolyTHF.

"By expanding our PolyTHF capacities, we are moving in line with our customers' steadily growing demand," said Sanjeev Gandhi, president, BASF Intermediates. "We will continue to support our customers in the future around the world as a reliable partner." Gandhi added that the business is growing at the highest rate in the Asia/Pacific region, which currently is the chief PolyTHF market.

August 28, 2012