Dec. 15, 2015 12:48 AM

Dongsung FineTec’s 250-job facility will support LNG projects.

Officials in the Lake Charles region continue to grapple with how they will support the industrial expansion hitting them from all sides — among other challenges, too much of a good thing has strained the housing market supply and is certain to create traffic problems in the near future — while other areas like Lafayette try to regroup amid increasing oilfield layoffs.

On top of the unprecedented billions of dollars in liquefied natural gas expansion projects announced or underway, another major economic development was confirmed in early December. Dongsung FineTec Co. Ltd. says it will create 250

new direct jobs and make a $5 million capital investment in a cryogenic insulation manufacturing facility in Lake Charles.

Founded in 1985 and based in South Korea, Dongsung FineTec says it is the world’s largest maker of cryogenic insulation for the LNG industry.

The jobs will have an annual salary of $40,000, plus benefits. Louisiana Economic Development estimates the project will result in 492 new indirect jobs, for a total of more than 742 new jobs for Calcasieu Parish and surrounding areas. The project also is expected to generate an additional 20 construction jobs.

The company plans to lease an 11-acre site at the Port of Lake Charles’ Industrial Park East for its manufacturing complex. The 59,000-square-foot building will be renovated for specialized insulation production.

The Lake Charles project is the company’s first manufacturing investment in the U.S., and is expected to be fully operational by May 2016. Its cryogenic insulation panels are designed to keep LNG cold at minus-163 degrees Celsius to facilitate storage and transport. The company also manufactures urethane foam insulation storage tanks and other insulation products for industrial applications. Dongsung FineTec says it has developed fuel tank and insulation solutions for smaller and mid-scale LNG operations as well as large-scale plants.

“The LNG facilities planned for our region will not only generate jobs for the area, they will also stimulate additional investment in the region,” Lake Charles Mayor Randy Roach said in a press release announcing the new facility. “Dongsung FineTec’s Lake Charles-based manufacturing site is a great example of this economic principle at work. Cryogenic insulation is a critical staple for LNG export facilities. FineTec’s new facility will provide these LNG companies with the product they need in the construction of their state-of-the-art facilities.”

The region’s natural gas liquefaction and export industry will provide a significant customer base for the company. Ten major LNG projects are in the works for the Southwest Region, including Magnolia LNG, Lake Charles LNG and Live Oak LNG in Calcasieu Parish and Cheniere Energy, Cameron LNG, Venture Global, SCT&E LNG, G2 LNG, Commonwealth LNG and Delphin LNG in Cameron Parish. Dongsung FineTec also expects to serve facilities in other Gulf Coast states.

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