Midwest Fertilizer Company is moving forward with plans to build a $2.8 billion nitrogen fertilizer manufacturing plant that will produce about 2 million tons of ammonia, urea ammonium nitrate solution and diesel exhaust fluid annually.
The $2.8 billion project is one of the largest fertilizer manufacturing investments in the U.S. in more than 20 years. According to economic impact calculations by the Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC), the construction of Midwest Fertilizer's plant alone is expected to have an economic impact of $425 million and, at full employment, the company's operations are expected to have a total economic impact of $138.6 million annually on state and local GDP while creating an additional 550 jobs throughout the region to support the expansion.
The 220-acre site in Mt. Vernon (Posey County) west of Evansville, will begin construction in 2018 and is expected to support more than 2,500 construction jobs. When finished, Midwest Fertilizer says up to 185 permanent jobs will be created.
The project was initially opposed by former governor Mike Pence in 2013 because one of the projects main investors is the Pakistan-based Fatima Group, who Pence suspected to have a connection with roadside explosives in Afghanistan.
Upon taking office in January, Governor Eric Holcomb re-evaluated the proposed project and gave it the go ahead. According to Greg Wathen, director of the Economic Development Coalition of Southwest Indiana, Holcomb said the project fits the overall direction of the state.
“From regional investments to our long-term plan for improving the state’s network of roads and bridges, Indiana is an active partner with the business community in supporting economic growth. I offer my enthusiastic support for Midwest Fertilizer’s plans to advance in southwest Indiana, and I look forward to seeing increased high-quality job opportunities for Hoosiers.”
The state Economic Development Corp. has offered the company up to $2.9 million in conditional tax credits, up to $400,000 in training grants and up to $300,000 in conditional incentives. The performance-based incentives require the company to create jobs and invest in the state.
Midwest Fertilizer is a new U.S. company to be owned by multinational investors, including Pakistan-based Fatima Group, which is a leader in the south Asian fertilizer industry. The new facility will incorporate the latest technologies to ensure safety for workers, the community and the environment, and has earned support from the U.S. Department of Defense.