NEWS
18 Aug 06
Inauguration ceremony marks successful start-up of integrated isocyanates complex at Shanghai Chemical Industry Park for Huntsman and partners

Shanghai, PRC, August 18, 2006 - Huntsman (NYSE: HUN), BASF and Chinese partners - Shanghai Hua Yi (Group Company), Sinopec Shanghai Gao Qiao Petrochemical Corporation and Shanghai Chlor-Alkali Chemical Co. Ltd. - held an opening ceremony today at the Shanghai Chemical Industry Park, China, to celebrate the start-up of their integrated isocyanates complex. The project, which was completed on schedule, involved a total capital expenditure of $1 billion.

Present at the ceremony were Vice Mayor Hu Yanzhao of Shanghai Municipality and senior management from the five partner companies.

The complex has a capacity of 240,000 metric tons per year of crude MDI (diphenylmethane diisocyanate), the primary precursor for polyurethanes products, and will serve the rapidly growing market for polyurethanes in China. Industry economists expect the Chinese polyurethanes market to grow at about 10 percent per year through 2015, making China the world’s largest market for polyurethanes products.
 
“The Chinese economy is growing strongly and China is rapidly becoming a major area of focus for all of our business divisions.” said Peter R. Huntsman, President and CEO of Huntsman Corporation. “This project demonstrates our commitment to increasing our presence here, even as we increase our investments in our differentiated business portfolio. We believe this facility is a terrific example of environmental responsibility and production efficiency, and look forward to working with our partners to enhance its performance.”

The integrated isocyanates complex consists of three separate joint ventures:

  • Huntsman Polyurethanes Shanghai Ltd. - An MDI finishing plant and a prepolymers plant built by Huntsman and Shanghai Chlor-Alkali Chemical Co. Ltd.
  • Shanghai Lianheng Isocyanate Co. Ltd. - A 240,000 metric tons per year crude MDI manufacturing plant including manufacturing facilities for the precursors aniline and nitrobenzene built by Hun tsman, BASF, Shanghai Hua Yi (Group) Company, Shanghai Chlor-Alkali Chemical Co. Ltd. and Sinopec Shanghai Gao Qiao Petrochemical Corporation.
  • Shanghai BASF Polyurethane Co. Ltd. - An MDI finishing plant and TDI plant with precursors nitric acid and dinitrotoluene built by BASF, Shanghai Hua Yi (Group) Company and Sinopec Shanghai Gao Qiao Petrochemical Corporation.

The isocyanates MDI are important precursors in the manufacture of polyurethanes - versatile polymers that are used in many applications such as the automotive and construction industries, in appliances such as refrigerators, and for upholstery and footwear.

The partners shared the common goal of building and operating a world-scale project according to the highest environment, health and safety (EHS) standards. The project involved 28 million working hours since groundbreaking in spring 2004. During the ceremony, an additional 250,000 yuan (USD 30,000) was donated to the “Good Neighbor” program initiated around two years ago by the three joint ventures, to help those experiencing disadvantage within the local community.

 

About Huntsman
Huntsman is a global manufacturer and marketer of differentiated and commodity chemicals. Its operating companies manufacture basic products for a variety of global industries including chemicals, plastics, automotive, aviation, textiles, footwear, paints and coatings, construction, technology, agriculture, health care, textiles, detergent, personal care, furniture, appliances and packaging. Originally known for pioneering innovations in packaging, and later, rapid and integrated growth in petrochemicals, Huntsman, with the acquisition of the Textile Effects business, has 15,000 employees and 78 operations in 24 countries. The Company had 2005 revenues of $13 billion.

Statements in this release that are not historical are forward-looking statements. These statements are based on managem ent’s current beliefs and expectations. The forward-looking statements in this release are subject to uncertainty and changes in circumstances and involve risks and uncertainties that may affect the company’s operations, markets, products, services, prices and other factors as discussed in the Huntsman companies’ filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Significant risks and uncertainties may relate to, but are not limited to, financial, economic, competitive, environmental, political, legal, regulatory and technological factors. Accordingly, there can be no assurance that the company’s expectations will be realized. The company assumes no obligation to provide revisions to any forward-looking statements should circumstances change, except as otherwise required by securities and other applicable laws.


Contacts
Media:  Don Olsen
Tel: +1 281 719 4175
Investor Relations:
John Heskett, tel: +1 801 584 5768


 
 
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