Kissimmee, Florida – Output from Dow’s joint venture plant Sadara due on stream from 2016 will be an opportunity for the company to strengthen its position in the US market, said Chris Chrisafides, commercial vice president, Dow Polyurethanes.
Chrisafides, speaking on the sidelines of the CPI meeting in early October said that the Sadara polyols and isocyanate plants in Saudi Arabia, are due to come on stream in 2016-17. Sadara is a joint venture between Dow and Saudi Aramco.
“Sadara and Map Ta Phut, Thailand, we have been taking product from here (the US) and supporting those businesses, now they are becoming self-sufficient we will use that capacity to support business here,” he said.
“From an MDI perspective it is a similar story, now those regions are becoming self-sufficient so we will use the material domestically, where we were frankly tight in the past,” said Chrisafides.
Chrisafides ruled out the idea of using material from the Middle East to support production in the Americas or Asia describing it as a “supply chain nightmare."
He added: "If you ship material it has to be vanilla, vanilla, vanilla. There is a tremendous risk, remember when oil prices dropped a couple of years ago, there were vessels waiting out there in the ocean for prices to rise before coming into port but the price went down further.”
To supply Dow’s customers Chrisafides said: “We need security of supply and reliability, we’ve got to supply customers from the regions that they are in and that’s our strategy."
Negotiations are still underway with potential partners to take space at the Sadara Value Park. Three systems houses were in negotiations last October.
Chrisafides confirmed: “we are having a lot of discussions with people to set up systems houses, they are imminent,” he said.