Dow raises PMDI output from LaPorte
Dow is increasing production at its polymeric methylene diphenyl diisocyanate (PMDI) operations at its LaPorte, Texas facility, which however remains earmarked for closure. The expansion is in response to the delayed start up of the company’s new 500 million lb. PMDI facility in Freeport, Texas. Dow also announced a lifting to 'force majeure' for its MDI products in North America. Customers there are, however, to remain on order control due to continued strong demand and limited inventories, according to a company statement. “The extension of our LaPorte facility will allow us to counterbalance the slower than expected start-up at Freeport and offer better security of supply moving forward,” - explained Chuck Reardon, Dow’s North American product market manager for polyurethanes. “We anticipate no net increase in capacity, resulting in the need for an order control to help manage product allocation in this sold-out MDI market. Once the new Freeport plant is running at designed rates, we intend to shut-down the LaPorte plant as originally announced,” - added Reardon.