Chemical and advanced materials maker, Celanese CorporationCE said that it has completed the construction of its Clear Lake, TX methanol unit, which is now fully operational. The methanol unit has an annual capacity of 1.3 million metric tons and is a joint venture between Celanese and Mitsui & Co., Ltd., of Tokyo, Japan.
With the unit in place, Celanese can supply a critical raw material. Moreover, this allows the Acetyl Chain to gain the economic benefit of abundant low-cost U.S. natural gas. Construction of the unit was completed in 19 months and it became fully operational in 21 months, with a capital cost of less than $700 per ton.
The share price of the company rose roughly 0.3% to close at $64.34 on Oct 16.
Texas-based Celanese is one of the world's largest producers of acetyl products, as well as a leading global producer of high-performance engineered polymers. The company is also the world leader in VAM and acetic acid production.
Celanese, which is one of the prominent chemical companies along with The Dow Chemical Company DOW , Eastman Chemical Co. EMN and Air Products & Chemicals Inc. APD , has been focused on reducing costs and running its plants more efficiently amid an uncertain operating backdrop. Its strong presence in emerging markets should support earnings this year.
Celanese's adjusted earnings for second-quarter 2015 topped the Zacks Consensus Estimate, aided by healthy margins in the Materials Solutions business. Revenues, however, fell by double digits and missed expectations. The company has raised its adjusted earnings forecast for 2015.
The company is confident about its performance through the rest of 2015 despite currency headwinds and a challenging macro environment, especially the recent volatility in China. Celanese expects to offset these headwinds with strong operating performance across all its segments and higher productivity gains.
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