Huntsman to close titanium dioxide facility in France


US-based Huntsman is planning to close its titanium dioxide (TiO2) manufacturing facility in Calais, France, by the third quarter of this year.

As part of the plan, the white end finishing and packaging operation of the Calais TiO2 facility will shut down, leading to the closure of the entire facility.

In 2015, Huntsman closed the black end manufacturing operations of its Calais-based TiO2 production facility.

Closing the white end finishing line of the Calais TiO2 facility will enable Huntsman to complete any of its remaining obligations to any third parties and regulators.

The proposed closure will affect 108 positions on site.

"Closing the white end finishing line of the Calais TiO2 facility will enable Huntsman to complete any of its remaining obligations to any third parties and regulators."

Huntsman pigments and additives division president Simon Turner said: “The planned closure of the Calais facility further optimises our manufacturing network and will increase our recently announced business improvement programme by $15m to a total annual benefit of $90m.

“Our priority is to communicate with our Calais employees and their representative groups, along with local community leaders, to ensure that the planned closure is safely and effectively managed.”

Huntsman is involved in the manufacturing and marketing of differentiated chemicals worldwide.

The company operates more than 100 manufacturing and research and development (R&D) facilities in approximately 30 countries.

In January this year, Huntsman’s TiO2 manufacturing facility in Pori, Finland, caught fire. The incident did not injure anyone.

The Pori facility has a production capacity of 130,000t, which represents around 15% of Huntsman’s total TiO2 capacity and about 10% of total European demand.