Shutdown at Dow

Dow Chemical plans to shed around 1,000 jobs and shut down some of its facilities in a move to improve the competitiveness of its global operations.

As part of the move, Dow will leave the automotive sealers business in North America, Asia Pacific and Latin America within the next nine to 18 months, and will explore strategic options for its operations in Europe.

In Brazil, its styrene plant located in Camaçari will be idled on January 1, 2008 while its hydroxyethyl cellulose manufacturing facility in Aratu will be closed during the first quarter of 2008.

Union Carbide Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary, will also shut down its polypropylene facility at St. Charles in Louisiana before the end of the year. This decision was driven by a number of factors, including the substantial capital costs required to maintain long-term operations at the facility.

Lastly, the company will significantly reduce support functions, including research and development, at the Union Carbide site in South Charleston, West Virginia.  Approximately 200 jobs will be affected there.

The company claims that the moves, amongst others, will save it around $180m a year.