NEW YORK (AP) -- A New York judge gave LyondellBasell Industries approval early Thursday to borrow more than $2 billion after a subsidiary of the chemical maker filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection earlier this week.
U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Robert Gerber gave the company's American unit interim approval to seek up to $2.167 billion in loans.
Earlier in the court session, which began on Wednesday, the company was given approval to seek an emergency loan of $100 million that was expected to last about two days.
The company was formed a year ago, when Basell International Holdings paid $12.7 billion for Houston-based Lyondell Chemical, taking on debt just as oil prices skyrocketed, squeezing profit margins at chemical makers.
Then, as oil prices fell in the second half of last year, the widening recession undercut demand for chemical products.
Houston-based Lyondell Chemical Co. identified 79 affiliates on Tuesday that will file for bankruptcy protection, including one of LyondellBasell's European holding companies.
Netherlands-based parent LyondellBasell is the world's third-largest independent chemical company. It is controlled by billionaire investor Len Blavatnik and has annual sales of $54.6 billion and more than 16,000 employees worldwide, according to its Web site.
Its products are used in gasoline, plastics, electronics, autos, paints and many other familiar products.