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Business

German steel giant lands lucrative contract in US

German heavy industry giant ThyysenKrupp has said it has secured a mega contract in the US where it will build a number of fertilizer plants. The facilities are meant to decrease dependence on Middle East imports.

Germany's ThyssenKrupp announced on Friday that its plant construction arm Uhde had won a lucrative contract in the US worth more than one billion euros ($1.3 billion).

The German industry heavyweight said it had secured an order to build a number of fertilizer plants in Port Neal, Iowa, and Donaldsonville, Louisiana within the framework of a cooperation project with CF Industries in the US.

"This will be another step towards improving the fertilizer plant infrastructure in the US," said the head of ThyssenKrupp North America, Torsten Gessner. "It also strengthens the market position of our company's plant engineering business in North America."

Four years of construction ahead

Gessner added the Port Neal project would consist of an ammonia plant with a daily capacity of about 2,000 metric tons as well as additional urea and urea granulation facilities. He spoke of a "strategically important location in the center of the mid west United States corn belt."

Together with similar facilities in Donaldsonville, the projects are designed to significantly reduce the dependence of the US on fertilizer imports from the Middle East and the North African region.

ThyssenKrupp stated construction work in both locations would be finalized by 2016. The company viewed the contract as encouragement to keep focusing more on its engineering expertise, thus shifting away from an earlier prioritization of its steel business.

hg/kms (dpa, Reuters, AFP)