KINGSPORT, TENN. - Eastman Chemicals Co. of Kingsport is locating its first South American PET resin plant in Z rate, Argentina. The 286 million-pound-per-year facility is designed to serve the soft drink industry in South America. The plant is scheduled to begin operations in the first half of 1998.
The Argentine project near Buenos Aires is one of two Eastman PET plants under way in Latin America. The other, a 264 million-pound-per-year facility at Cosoleacaque, Mexico, is due to open this month.
Eastman also is building a 264 million-pound-per-year PET plant at San Roque, Spain, that is scheduled to begin operations by mid-1997.
Eastman plans to provide the Argentine plant with pure terephthalic acid raw material from the United States.
The firm is considering a long-term plan to establish a PTA plant in South America, a spokesman said.
Eastman, the world's leading producer of PET resin for the bottle industry, has selected the Clinton, N.J.-based construction group Foster Wheeler International Corp. to provide engineering, supply equipment and build the plant.
Eastman declined to disclose the value of the construction contract.