Yara Puts Off Urea Expansion on Higher Costs, Risk of Oversupply

Yara International ASA, the largest publicly traded nitrogen-fertilizer maker, postponed an expansion of its Belle Plaine plant in Canada to stem rising costs and prevent a surplus of urea.

The move was “primarily due to recent increases in construction cost, both in Canada and North America generally,” Chief Executive Officer Joergen Ole Haslestad said in a filing. “There is also a significant risk of future nitrogen oversupply in North America as new project initiatives are announced.”

Yara, based in Oslo, is adapting to lower prices for its nitrogen fertilizer as Chinese exports of urea climb. The planned expansion, which would add about 1.3 million metric tons of urea production a year, remains an option for the company once construction costs ease, Yara said today.

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