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DSM intends to close Agro plant in IJmuiden (NL)

Agreement in principle on termination of ammonia transport by rail between Geleen and IJmuiden in the Netherlands

07-Mar-2008

The Dutch Ministers Cramer (Housing, Spatial Planning and the Environment) and Eurlings (Transport, Public Works and Water Management) and DSM announced that they have reached an agreement in principle on the termination of ammonia transport by rail between Geleen and IJmuiden. In this way the Ministries are implementing the Cabinet Resolution on Chain Studies. The Ministry of Housing, Spatial Planning and the Environment and the Ministry of Transport, Public Works and Water Management wish to put an end to this ammonia transport by rail in order to reduce the risks of transports involving hazardous substances even further. When these ammonia transports are terminated, the DSM Agro site in IJmuiden will lose its reason for being. DSM has therefore decided to close the site with effect from 1 January 2010. The Ministries will compensate DSM for damages.

The closure of the DSM Agro site in IJmuiden will lead to the loss of about 120 jobs. On the basis of the existing employment pact and agreements that have been made regarding re-employment at Corus and DSM, DSM expects to be able to avoid forced redundancies. One of DSM's nitric acid plants, which is currently located at IJmuiden, will be relocated to Geleen. DSM is exploring the possibility of expanding fertilizer production in Geleen and thus largely compensating for the loss of capacity in IJmuiden.

The Ministry of Housing, Spatial Planning and the Environment and the Ministry of Transport, Public Works and Water Management have conducted Chain Studies in which they analyzed the problems involved in the transport and storage of hazardous substances with the aim of mitigating these problems where possible. These Chain Studies were focused on ammonia, chlorine and LPG and formed the basis for the measures aimed at terminating ammonia transports between Geleen and IJmuiden. The agreement in principle is an example of the way in which the Dutch government and Dutch industry are joining forces to make the Netherlands an even safer place regarding the transport of hazardous substances.

The closure of DSM Agro in IJmuiden will have no consequences for the intended sale of DSM's Agro business, which was confirmed in September 2007 when DSM announced the acceleration of its corporate strategy Vision 2010 - Building on Strengths. The agreement in principle that has now been reached represents the finalization of an issue with a long history and will thus provide clarity to a future owner.

The agreement in principle is subject to the relevant approval and advice procedures.

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