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Comment Business & Economics

BASF to build plant for sodium methylate in Brazil

By Gerald Ondrey |

BASF S.E. (Ludwigshafen, Germany; www.basf.com) is planning to construct a production plant for sodium methylate in Guaratinguet‡, Brazil, its largest site in South America. The plant, which will have a capacity of 60,000 m.t./yr, will be the first such plant for this product in South America and is primarily intended to supply the regional market. Sodium methylate is an efficient catalyst for the production of biodiesel, which has developed into an alternative for diesel fuels in the past 10 years. Biodiesel is able to meet the requirements of engine manufacturers for high-quality fuels. “We expect annual global demand for biodiesel to increase to about 18 billion ton in coming years. About 15% of this amount will come from South America,” says Ulrich Büschges, group vice president of BASF’s global business unit Inorganic Specialties. Legislation planned in Brazil will require fuel to contain 3% biodiesel by 2013, and this figure is set to rise to 5%. Argentina has mandated that biodiesel makes up 5% of fuel by 2010. Other South American countries have similar plans.
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