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Houston — Sasol, the world’s largest maker of fuel from coal, will consider carving out a separate company from its expanding chemicals business. The company will focus on a potential split after its $11.1bn chemicals project near Lake Charles, Louisiana, is completed in late 2019, co-CEO Steve Cornell said by phone late Tuesday. "It’s a scenario we evaluate, but it’s not a scenario which is imminent," co-CEO Bongani Nqwababa said in the same interview from Houston. Sasol is shifting strategy as it expects low oil prices to persist, while the executives say its specialty chemicals used in lubricants, inks, metalworking and catalysts enjoy a competitive advantage. The Johannesburg-based company last week said it would not invest in more oil-refining capacity and cancelled plans to build a $14bn gas-to-liquids fuel project at the Louisiana site. The potential split comes as the Louisiana project marks a "step change" in Sasol’s production of chemicals, which already generate half the ...

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