EuroChem plans to build a $1.5 billion ammonia and urea production plant at a yet to be chosen site in Louisiana
to manufacture and distribute fertilizer products in the U.S. and other markets. According to Louisiana Economic Development the project will create 200 new direct jobs and an estimated 1,378 new indirect jobs.
Russian-based EuroChem is evaluating two final sites for its Louisiana plant. The company’s purchase of one state-owned site, located in Iberville Parish, is subject to approval by the Natural Resources committees of the Louisiana Legislature. That property has been on the market for more than two years through the Office of State Lands, and EuroChem has deposited $12 million in an escrow account to buy the property, subject to the committee votes.
The firm also secured an option to purchase a private-sector property in St. John the Baptist Parish. Both Mississippi River sites are being evaluated for construction and logistics suitability, and the company will make a final site decision within the next year. The project requires four years of construction work, which can yield approximately 2,000 new construction jobs.
Based in Moscow, EuroChem has developed its facilities to date in Western Europe and Russia and has focused on nitrogen and phosphate fertilizer products. The Louisiana facility will operate in the nitrogen category and serve as both a manufacturing and distribution center. EuroChem’s Louisiana project represents its first manufacturing facility in the Americas, though the company already is established with farmers and industrial consumers in the market through trading offices it operates in Tampa, Florida, and São Paulo, Brazil.
“The Americas accounted for approximately a quarter of our sales in 2012 and we expect its contribution to continue to grow,” said Strezhnev, the EuroChem CEO. “We therefore see it as a next logical step to establish our production closer to our customers. Louisiana brings together all the right ingredients – from its favorable political and economic environment to the availability of energy, labor, infrastructure and logistics – to fulfill our strategic vision in one of the world’s largest agricultural markets.”
Gov. Bobby Jindal said, “As one of the world’s largest fertilizer companies, EuroChem recognized that our mix of resources makes Louisiana the best place in the world for business investment. We’re proud that world-scale investors like EuroChem are coming to Louisiana from all over the globe, and this project will continue our goal of providing outstanding careers for our people for years to come.”
To secure the project, the state offered the company a competitive incentives package that includes a $6 million performance-based grant to offset the costs of site infrastructure improvements. In addition, EuroChem will receive the services of LED FastStart, the state’s workforce training program. The company also is expected to utilize Louisiana’s Quality Jobs and Industrial Tax Exemption programs.