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IFC INVESTS IN BRAZILIAN PETROCHEMICAL COMPANY


Jannette Esguerra
Phone: (202) 458-5204
Fax: (202) 974-4384
E-mail: jesguerra@ifc.org


WASHINGTON, D.C., December 3, 1999 — The International Finance Corporation is helping to develop the Brazilian petrochemicals industry with an investment of US$85 million for Innova S.A. to build styrene monomer and polystyrene plants in the state of Rio Grande do Sul.
IFC is providing a loan of $20 million and $5 million in equity, as well as a B loan of $60 million for the account of participant banks. The $283.4 million project will purchase and rehabilitate an ethylbenzene plant in the Triunfo petrochemical complex, and build a styrene monomer unit, two new polystyrene plants, and offsites and utilities. The styrene plant will begin operating in January 2000, and the polystyrene plant will start up in October 2000.
The Innova project will help integrate production from ethylbenzene to polystyrene, making the company a world-class producer of these essential items, said Jean-Philippe Halphen, Director of IFC's Chemicals, Petrochemicals and Fertilizers department. Brazilian producers will be able to compete internationally and supply feedstock to domestic industry at competitive prices.
Innova was established in 1997 to build and operate a styrene/polystyrene production facility in the Trifuno petrochemical complex in Rio Grande do Sul state. It is a subsidiary of Perez Companc International, an offshore holding company of Perez Companc SA of Argentina, and an important player in Argentina's oil and gas sectors.
The mission of IFC, part of the World Bank Group, is to promote private sector investment in developing countries, which will reduce poverty and improve people's lives. IFC finances private sector investments in the developing world, mobilizes capital in the international financial markets, and provides technical assistance and advice to governments and businesses.