Economic benefits of Sasol project exceeding previous estimates
Economist Dr. Jim Richardson releases economic impact results with benefits experienced to date—nearly three years into project construction.
Westlake, Louisiana– Louisiana State University economist Dr. Jim Richardson confirmed economic impacts generated by Sasol’s $11 billion Southwest Louisiana project are exceeding previous estimates with benefits already experienced—nearly three years into project construction.
“The benefit-cost ratio for the state could exceed nearly 2 to 1 through 2050,” Dr. Richardson said. “Southwest Louisiana and the state will see an outstanding return on their investment in Sasol’s project. The jobs and revenues being generated during construction continue to grow, and benefits created by project operations will sustain for at least three decades.”
The study projects Sasol’s $11 billion capital investment will generate $161 million in state taxes and $135 million in local taxes during construction. As of 2017, Sasol has already paid $108.5 million in state taxes and $90 million in local taxes. Sasol is also projected to spend about $4 billion directly in Louisiana during the construction period, an increase from the company’s estimate last year of $3.5 billion.
Sasol has already hired about 400 of the more than 500 full-time jobs it expects to add for the operational phase of the project, and 87 percent of those are Louisiana residents—the majority from Calcasieu Parish. The average salary for these jobs is $80,000. Additionally, economic activity generated by the project would sustain nearly 1,900 direct and indirect jobs in the area over the 30-year operational period. These jobs are in addition to the approximately 450 full-time positions that support Sasol’s existing operations.
“Sasol is proud to be delivering on its commitment to hire local residents and businesses for the project,” Mike Thomas, senior vice president of Sasol North American Operations, said. “We continue to look ahead as we work toward completing construction safely and hiring the remaining positions for our new operations.”
Sasol will begin a phased commissioning of the seven new units in 2018. In 2019, the project is expected to generate $7.5 million annually in taxes payable to the state. Local governments will collect $6.2 million annually.