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Nexen to Close Amherstburg Chemicals Plant

Nexen IncNexen Inc. is to close its sodium chlorate plant, effective July 31, 2005, located in Amherstburg, Ontario. The plant, which has a capacity of 54,000 annual metric tonnes, has been running at reduced operating levels for several months as a result of high electricity costs. "Upon evaluating the future expected electricity pricing in the region, we have reluctantly decided to cease operations at Amherstburg" said Gary Kubera, President of Nexen Chemicals. "Unfortunately with its existing cost structure, this plant is not competitive with plants in other regions with structurally lower electricity costs". Preparations have been made to ensure uninterrupted product supply to all customers following this shutdown.

Nexen Chemicals, a subsidiary of Nexen Inc. is a major global producer of sodium chlorate, an environmentally preferred bleaching agent used primarily by the pulp and paper industry. Nexen Chemical's has approximately 405,000 metric tonnes of annual sodium chlorate production capacity in North America with plants located at Nanaimo, British Columbia; Bruderheim, Alberta; Brandon, Manitoba; and Beauharnois, Quebec. The growing South American market is served from a 62,200 annual metric tonne capacity facility at Aracruz, Brazil. The company also has a chlor-alkali production facility in North Vancouver, British Columbia.

Nexen Inc. previously announced that it intends to dispose of its chemicals operations. This decision will not impact that process.

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Posted 30/06/05

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