Eastman Chemical Company plans to reverse employee pay cuts implemented as of April 1 to help the company reduce expenses during the global recession. Eastman employs 10,000 people, including 6,800 in Kingsport. Before restoring the pay cuts, the company wanted to see solid Q3 financial results, a satisfactory Q4 earnings outlook, and an expectation for 2010 to be better than 2009.
The company will pursue joint venture projects and acquisitions where appropriate, and is rethinking to seek a partner in an industrial gasification plant in Beaumont, Texas. The Beaumont project has faced unexpectedly high construction costs. The PET plant at IntegRex plant in Columbia, will be shut in December to repair equipment. The plant has been plagued by operational challenges, which contributed to a Q3 operating loss of US$10 mln for the company’s performance polymers segment.