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EuroChem picks St. John for fertilizer plant and distribution center

EDGARD — EuroChem Group AG announced plans this week to build a Louisiana natural gas-based fertilizer plant and distribution center in St. John the Baptist Parish.

The site in St. John was chosen over one in Iberville Parish.

“EuroChem considers both sites excellent and suitable for a large industrial development of this type,” EuroChem CEO Dmitry Strezhnev said. “After careful and thoughtful deliberation, we have chosen the location in St. John the Baptist Parish for our project.

“We greatly appreciate the support that EuroChem has received from the State of Louisiana, St. John the Baptist Parish and Iberville Parish, who have demonstrated a strong and consistent commitment to the development of our proposed facility. We look forward to working with our new neighbors in the local community.”

A final investment decision remains subject to EuroChem Board approval. Company officials said finalizing the purchase agreement on the property allows EuroChem to move forward with the planning and pre-construction phase of the project.

No price was released for the industrial-zoned land bought Monday from owners of the old Goldmine Plantation site near Edgard, various news outlets reported.

EuroChem committed to build an ammonia and urea production plant in Louisiana several years ago to manufacture and distribute fertilizer products in the U.S. and other markets. The project will create 200 new direct jobs, resulting in an annual payroll of $11.6 million and an estimated 1,378 new indirect
jobs, according to Louisiana Economic Development estimates.

Two locations were short listed among available properties, including the property in St. John the Baptist Parish and a state-owned site in Iberville Parish, which was purchased by EuroChem in 2013.

The company plans to work with state and parish officials to secure another industrial buyer for the Iberville Parish site.

The state began meeting with EuroChem about a potential Louisiana manufacturing and distribution project in August 2012. 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.