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Solvay and Shanghai 3F join forces to boost specialty polymers production capacity in China

Solvay and Shanghai 3F New Material Co.,Ltd. announce today that they have agreed to establish a production joint venture in Changshu (Jiangsu province, China) to serve the fast-growing Asian market with high performance fluorinated polymers.

The joint venture for the production of fluoromonomer TFE and PTFE polymers will be held 80 percent by SH3F and 20 percent by Solvay. SH3F will contribute its TFE and PTFE production plant, while Solvay will contribute a cash payment and license its PTFE proprietary technology. SH3F will operate the joint venture's production plant.

In addition, the two companies will establish a long-term supply agreement of raw materials for production of fluorinated polymers: SH3F's Changshu plant will supply Solvay's Specialty Polymers adjacent production unit with the strategic raw materials 142b and HFP. These supplies will enable the Specialty Polymers business unit to produce a larger and richer fluoro-polymer product mix for use in markets such as automotive, photovoltaic, Li-ion batteries, membranes for water purification and oil & gas applications.

SH3F and Solvay's plants are currently under construction at the Changshu site. The TFE/PTFE production plant of the joint venture will be completed by the first quarter in 2014. Solvay's new fluoropolymer production plant is expected to be completed in phases throughout 2015.

"The agreement with SH3F will allow us to capture significant growth potential in the region, and China in particular," said Augusto Di Donfrancesco, President of Solvay Specialty Polymers. "Moreover, Solvay's new plant will become the most complete and versatile production facility of the Specialty Polymers business unit, creating a platform for the future development of fluoropolymers to help meet demand from a growing middle class and growing use of energy."

"The alliance with Solvay on special fluorinated polymers will complement both parties' advantages in terms of technology and resources and will further upgrade the product quality of Shanghai 3F F-polymers to better serve the growing domestic and international high-end market demand of fluorinated plastics," said Jian Jin, General Manager of Shanghai 3F New Materials Co. Ltd. "With this great opportunity, we are looking forward to enhance the collaboration of both parties in other areas that will be mutually beneficial to both of us."

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