BASF CEO Martin Brudermüller has signed a nonbinding agreement with Chinese authorities to build a new integrated chemical complex in Guangdong, China. The German chemical giant says investment in the new site could reach $10 billion by 2030.
The project would be the chemical firm’s largest ever investment. And it would establish the company’s newest site incorporating the company’s “Verbund” principle of meticulous integration.
Brudermüller signed the agreement in the presence of German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang, who is visiting Germany.
BASF says the site would be its third largest after Ludwigshafen, Germany, and Antwerp, Belgium, which are also Verbund sites.
The installation would have a 1-million-metric-ton-per-year ethylene cracker. The preliminary scope of the project includes basic chemicals such as ethylene oxide, acrylic acid, oxo chemicals, propylene oxide, and butadiene. Downstream from these would be ethylene glycol, surfactants, amines, superabsorbent polymers, acrylates, polyols, and performance polymers.
BASF would own the Guangdong site without a partner and expects to open the first plants in 2026. The company says Guangdong is home to many of its most important customers in the automotive and electronics industry.
The company started up its other Chinese Verbund site—a joint venture with Sinopec in Nanjing—in 2005. That site generates $3.1 billion in revenues per year.
BASF’s other Verbund sites are Freeport, Texas; Geismar, La.; and Kuantan, Malaysia.