BASF invests in a new plant for the production of oxidized waxes at its Ludwigshafen site

Oxidized wax capacity to be doubled / Production Verbund saves energy and creates synergies

Ludwigshafen, (PresseBox) - In the fourth quarter of 2008, BASF will begin construction of a second oxidizing plant for the production of synthetic waxes at its Ludwigshafen, Germany, site. From 2010 the plant will produce several thousand metric tons of oxidized waxes using a process developed by BASF. This is double the current production capacity. The waxes are used primarily in plastics processing.

As in the existing plant, which has been in operation for more than ten years, the raw material low-density polyethylene waxes (PE waxes) will come from the site's own polymerization plants. Thus, the new plant will fit perfectly into BASF's Verbund, the company's integrated raw materials and energy system, at the Ludwigshafen site. "At the same time as building the new plant, we will also modernize our existing plant for PE waxes," said Dr. Thomas Greindl, head of European Marketing BASF Care Chemicals & Formulators. The total investment will be about €10 million.

"Due to the growing demand for plastics around the world, the market for high-quality waxes will continue to increase," added Greindl. "We therefore expect attractive growth opportunities for our products." BASF markets its high-quality waxes worldwide in the specialties segment. They are available in the form of powders, fine powders, granules, pastilles or as liquid emulsions.

A wide range of applications In plastics, for example polyvinylchloride (PVC), waxes are used as lubricating and dispersing agents. With their help it is possible to reduce the amount of energy needed in further processing. In floor and shoe care products and also in automotive polishes and finishes, waxes provide protection and shine. The paper of glossy magazines is also coated with wax during printing, so the ink does not stick to the hands as one turns the pages. As a mild abrasive in toothpaste for sensitive teeth, waxes complement the mechanical cleaning process. Thin layers of wax on the skins of citrus fruits protect the fruit from drying-out and bruising. Coated chewing gums are also covered with a protective wax film to preserve their flavor.

About BASF's Care Chemicals & Formulators business

BASF's Care Chemicals & Formulators business unit develops, produces and markets a comprehensive range of products for cosmetics, detergents & cleaners, and industrial and chemical applications. The products offered by Care Chemicals & Formulators include personal care ingredients, surfactants, polymers, chelating agents, biocides, waxes and wax emulsions, as well as metal surface treatment products. Care Chemicals & Formulators is part of BASF's Care Chemicals division.

BASF AG

BASF is the world's leading chemical company: The Chemical Company. Its portfolio ranges from oil and gas to chemicals, plastics, performance products, agricultural products and fine chemicals. As a reliable partner BASF helps its customers in virtually all industries to be more successful. With its high-value products and intelligent solutions, BASF plays an important role in finding answers to global challenges such as climate protection, energy efficiency, nutrition and mobility. BASF has more than 95,000 employees and posted sales of almost €58 billion in 2007. Further information on BASF is available on the Internet at www.basf.com.

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