TAIPEI, March 1 Formosa Petrochemical Corp.
expects faster approval for a planned $9.4 billion
petrochemical plant in the U.S. state of Louisiana under the
administration of President Donald Trump, the company's chairman
said on Wednesday.
The appointment last month of Scott Pruitt to head the U.S.
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has been welcomed by many
Republican lawmakers who blame the agency for federal overreach
and killing jobs in the coal and other industries, but has
raised concerns among environmental advocates.
Asked about the impact of the new EPA appointment, Formosa
Petrochemical chairman Chen Bao-lang said he expects the group
will benefit from less stringent environmental regulations
undera Trump administration.
"We are more optimistic about the investment," Chen told
Reuters in an interview. "At least the obstacles will be
fewer... We're aiming to get an air permit in August 2018."
Formosa Petrochemical is part of Taiwanese conglomerate
Formosa Plastics Group.
Another Formosa subsidiary, Formosa Ha Tinh Steel, paid $500
million in damages in Vietnam after it admitted last year that
it polluted more than 200 km (125 miles) of coastline in April,
killing more than 100 tonnes of fish and devastating the
environment, jobs and economies of four provinces.
(Reporting by Faith Hung; Editing by Richard Pullin)