DANBURY, Conn., July 13, 2011 — White Martins, the Brazil-based subsidiary of Praxair, Inc. (NYSE: PX), has signed a 15-year agreement to supply nitrogen and oxygen to Braskem, the largest petrochemical company in the Americas by capacity and the world’s largest producer of biopolymers.
White Martins will build and operate a new cryogenic on-site air separation plant with a capacity of 200 tons per day. The plant will supply Braskem’s expanded polyvinyl chloride (PVC) unit in the state of Alagoas, in Brazil’s northeast region. Braskem has invested an estimated R$1 billion (US$635 million) in the new industrial unit – the highest ever made by Braskem in a single project in Brazil – which is scheduled to start operations in the first half of 2012.
Braskem already has a PVC unit in Alagoas, and this project will almost double its annual PVC production capacity in the state, making Alagoas the largest producer of PVC in Latin America. This investment marks the strengthening of the chemical/plastic production chain, also promoting industrial development in the region.
"White Martins’ partnership on this project was essential, since, in order to expand our production, we will use a new technology that requires oxygen supply. Once again, White Martins has believed and invested to support Braskem's growth, further strengthening our more than 20-year partnership in the state," says Marcelo Cerqueira, Braskem's vinyls business director.
“We are proud to be selected by Braskem to take part in this major project that is so important to the economy of both Alagoas state and Brazil,” said Domingos Bulus, president of White Martins.
Braskem considers competitiveness and technology autonomy, combined with the commitment to promote sustainable development, as its strategy bases. Today, Braskem produces more than 15 million tons of thermoplastic resins and other petrochemical products.
About White Martins Gases Industriais Ltda.
White Martins has supplied a comprehensive range of industrial gases and technologies to customers in a wide variety of industries for almost 100 years. In addition to Brazil, it has operations in eight other South American countries.
About Praxair, Inc.
Praxair is the largest industrial gases company in North and South America, and one of the largest worldwide, with 2010 sales of $10 billion. The company produces, sells and distributes atmospheric, process and specialty gases, and high-performance surface coatings. Praxair products and technologies bring productivity and environmental benefits to a diverse group of industries, including aerospace, chemicals, electronics, energy, food and beverage, healthcare, manufacturing, metals and others. More information on Praxair is available on the Internet at www.praxair.com.