Mega-mess: The huge promise Sasol couldn’t keep

Business

Mega-mess: The huge promise Sasol couldn’t keep

The cost of its US chemicals project has ballooned alarmingly - but this isn't the biggest disappointment

BusinessLIVE reporter

When Sasol said its ambitious Lake Charles Chemicals Project in the US had run $1.1bn over budget, it took shareholders by surprise, causing the share to plunge as much as 15%. 

But the market’s deep disappointment ought to be less about the price – even though it has now ballooned over 45% of its original cost estimate – and more about how management continued to promise something they could not deliver.

Sasol’s final investment decision in 2014 pegged the project cost at $8.9bn and said it would start operating in 2018...

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