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HOECHST CELANESE NEARLY DOUBLING SIZE OF PET RESINS EXPANSION AT PLANT IN MEXICO

 HOECHST CELANESE NEARLY DOUBLING SIZE OF PET RESINS
 EXPANSION AT PLANT IN MEXICO
 CHARLOTTE, N.C., April 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Hoechst Celanese's Packaging Resins Business Unit is adding 125 million pounds of polyethylene terephthalate (PET) melt polymer and solid stating capacity at the Queretaro (Qro.) Plant of Celanese Mexicana S.A. instead of 70 million pounds as previously announced.
 Hoechst Celanese announced in September 1991 that 70 million pounds of new, state-of-the-art resins capacity would be added at Queretaro by 1993 as part of a $100 million addition of nearly 500 million pounds of world-class PET capacity by 1995.
 E.F. "Ted" Ebner, a Hoechst Celanese group vice president, says the size of the Queretaro project is being increased "to make certain that we continue responding efficiently and effectively to the demands of the rapidly growing Mexican market."
 Ebner attributes much of the increasingly upbeat outlook for PET resins in Mexico to the 1991 introduction there by the Coca-Cola and Pepsi Cola companies of soft drinks in 1.5-liter PET bottles.
 "What's happening in Mexico, where we have world-scale polyester facilities through Celanese Mexicana," says Ebner, "reinforces our conviction that packaging resins, and the bottle resins segment of the business in particular, is a major polyester growth business in North America in the 90's.
 "As that growth occurs and glass and other non-polyester packaging materials are displaced by recyclable PET, recycling will become increasingly important. Hoechst Celanese is prepared to be a leader in that environmentally important, and absolutely essential effort."
 Hoechst Celanese, which joined The Coca-Cola Co. in late 1990 in pioneering the methanolysis-based, closed-loop recycling of soft drink bottles, considers PET packaging and recycling an essential combination, given the urgency of the waste-reduction challenges worldwide.
 In addition to Queretaro in phase one of a two-phase North American capacity-expansion initiative, approximately 130 million pounds of new PET resins capacity is to be operational by 1993 at Spartanburg and Greer, S.C. and Salisbury, N.C.
 Increasing capacity in the Carolinas, as announced this past September, involves bringing idle and under-utilized capacity at the Salisbury Plant back into production in late 1991 and early 1992; upgrading efficiencies of polymer units at the Greer and Spartanburg facilities in 1992 and 1993; and starting a new solid-stating unit at the Spartanburg Plant in 1993.
 Phase two of Hoechst Celanese's PET resins initiative provides for a new 140-million-pounds-per-year production unit to be in operation at Spartanburg in 1994, followed there a year later by a second such unit.
 Hoechst Celanese continues its packaging-resins focus on the clear soft drink and custom container segments of the market, as it selectively cultivates higher-value-added opportunities.
 Hoechst Celanese, a wholly owned subsidiary of Hoechst AG of Germany, has leading positions in chemicals, fibers, advanced materials and technologies and the life sciences.
 -0- 4/21/92
 /CONTACT: James P. Allen, Hoechst Celanese, 704-554-2224/ CO: Hoechst Celanese; Hoechst AG ST: North Carolina, South Carolina IN: CHM SU:


CM-JZ -- CH010 -- 0775 04/21/92 14:50 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Apr 21, 1992
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