San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Two more companies close operations in Costa Rica, lay off 110 employees

Plastic bottle manufacturer Total PET Packaging and its recycling subsidiary New World Recycle have closed operations in Costa Rica, the company confirmed on Tuesday.

The decision to close the businesses was made on April 30, but Total PET did not officially announce the news until Tuesday, after notifying 110 employees.

The closure of both companies represents a total loss of at least $16 million of initial investment, according to the business weekly El Financiero.

Total PET had been operating in the country for 14 years, with a production facility in a free trade zone in Heredia, where 70 workers were employed.

Company president Ernesto Moreno said in a press release that the decision was based on a lack of capital from investors.

New World Recycle opened last August with the aim of recycling used plastic bottles into new ones.

The company invested some $13.5 million in the recycling plant, the first of its kind in the country and the second in Latin America.

The plant, located in Tres Ríos, west of Cartago, employed 40 people. It had the capacity to process 9,000 tons of waste per year, equivalent to 300 million bottles.

In 2012, company representatives told El Financiero they had plans to build five more recycling plants throughout Latin America over the next five years, starting in 2014.

Contact L. Arias at

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