AMOCO TO BUILD POLYPROPYLENE PLANT IN TEXAS

AMOCO TO BUILD POLYPROPYLENE PLANT IN TEXAS

Amoco Chemical Co. announced Wednesday it will construct a new 300 million pounds-a-year polypropylene unit at its Chocolate Bayou plant near Alvin, Texas.

The unit will use Amoco's own gas-phase process and catalyst and is scheduled for completion in 1992."The unit will permit Amoco to offer a full range of polypropylene products - homopolymer, random copolymer, and impact polymer - and position the company to pursue downstream opportunities in related product areas such as polymer alloys and compounds," Robert Cadieux, Amoco president, said.

Amoco, the second largest producer of polypropylene in the United States, currently operates 1.1 billion pounds at three plants in Texas. Himont Inc. of Wilmington is the largestproducer in the United States, with 2.2 billion pounds of capacity.

Amoco also operates a 700 million pounds a year plant in Geel, Belgium.

Demand for polypropylene has been tight recently and has allowed both Himont and Amoco to announce price increases of 3 cents a pound, effective April 1.

Polypropylene is a plastic that is used to manufacture a wide variety of products, including fiber for carpeting and upholstery, film for packaging, and molded parts for automotive, appliance, houseware and medical uses.

Amoco, based in Chicago, has been operating a commercial gas-phase polypropylene plant since 1980 and has granted several licenses in recent years.

"We have made significant technological improvements during the last several years, and believe we now have a superior process and catalyst package that will allow us to compete in worldwide licensing," Mr. Cadieux said.

Other major polypropylene process technologies are Himont's Spheripol process and

Shell Chemical Co.'s and Union Carbide Corp.'s Unipol process.