BAYTOWN, TEXAS — Bayer Corp. has begun building a new toluene diisocyanate plant at its Baytown complex.
Bayer confirmed the project Oct. 5, about 18 months after it indicated it would include a new TDI plant as part of a $1.3 billion expansion at Baytown. It plans to complete the $150 million project in 2000.
Bayer will add 220 million pounds of capacity for TDI, a key intermediate for polyurethane resins. It will export all TDI made at the new plant.
The expansion will boost Bayer's domestic TDI capacity to 504 million pounds.
Bayer Chairman Manfred Schneider announced the TDI project while in Baytown for the opening of a new $140 million methylene diphenyl diisocyanate plant and an $80 million expansion of polycarbonate resin capacity.
The new plants and added capacity mark the near-completion of a $1.2 billion investment program at Baytown, company officials said at Polyurethanes Expo '98, Sept. 17-20 in Dallas. The company first announced the expansions in mid-1997.
The Baytown growth program is part of a master plan to invest about $9 billion in U.S. operations by 2000. Bayer's Baytown investments also include:
$150 million for a bisphenol A plant.
$500 million for infrastructure and raw materials plants for making isocyanates, including a chloralkali plant.
$140 million for expansion of its dinitrotoluene and toluene diamine operation.
Other firms are investing $200 million to support Baytown's activities, he said, but did not reveal their names.
Bayer had 1997 sales of $9.3 billion and employs more than 24,000.