Koch Subsidiary INVISTA to Build $1 Billion New Plant in China

The Center for Media and Democracy (CMD) has previously reported on Koch Industries' foray into China with its investment in SINA Corp, a leading Chinese tech company. Now comes the announcement by the fiber company INVISTA, a wholly owned Koch subsidiary since 2004, that it will spend $1 billion to build a facility in China to manufacture a chemical used in the production of nylon.

The new infusion of Koch cash into China comes in addition to more than $600 million INVISTA has invested in China over the past five years.

Koch Industries certainly has the money. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, which slashed tax rates for corporations and the wealthy, is expected to provide the Kochs, as individuals and as partners in Koch Industries, with a windfall of as much as $1.4 billion per year.

Meanwhile, Koch subsidiaries in the United States have announced hundreds of layoffs this year.

Kochs No Stranger to Totalitarian Governments

While the Kochs' libertarian ideology may seem at odds with China's political landscape, where the Communist Party is guaranteed supreme political power by the constitution and Xi Jinping has consolidated power as the country's permanent president, the Koch family is no stranger to totalitarian governments.

"The Kochs have previously acknowledged part of their father's [Fred Koch] history about helping Soviet dictator Josef Stalin build refineries and then preaching anti-communism in the U.S. once his fortune was made," wrote Lisa Graves, former executive director of CMD.

In her book, Dark Money, Jane Mayer also revealed that Fred Koch helped build a refinery personally approved by Adolf Hitler, one of the three largest refineries in the Third Reich, which produced the oil needed to fuel Hitler's military aggression.

Now, like then, when the Kochs lambaste President Trump for imposing tariffs on Chinese imports, it isn't clear whose interests are being promoted by the brothers.

Don Wiener

Don Wiener is a writer at the Center for Media and Democracy. Don has 40 years experience working as a policy analyst, researcher, media strategist, and coalition coordinator for dozens of community, public interest, labor, and environmental groups. He has a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.