On December 1, OCI Chemical Ltd. and Kumho P&B Chemicals entered into a (50-50) joint venture contract to produce 100 KTPA of Epichlorohydrin (ECH). The ECH thus produced will be used as a raw material for lightweight epoxy resins for electric vehicles and wind power generation. The partnership is a strategic move taken by both the parties to strengthen their competitiveness in the growing epoxy resin industry by ensuring a stable supply of ECH.
As per the company’s latest press release, OCI will be implementing this joint venture business through its subsidiary OCIMSB in Malaysia. The project, worth KRW 200 billion will be commissioned at Samalaju Industrial Park, Sarawak, Malaysia. In addition to this, OCI also announced an additional investment of KRW 180 billion for 100 KTPA chlor-alkali capacity, which would act as a raw material for ECH, starting in 2024.
The company source mentioned that the Malaysian plant will be utilizing hydroelectric power, an eco-friendly energy source for the production process. ECH, is usually produced by reacting chlorine (a by-product during Caustic Soda production), and glycerin, a by-product of biodiesel. The company is planning to adopt an eco-friendly process of recycling wastewater to minimize waste generation.
OCI Company Ltd. is a Korean chemical producer based in Seoul. The company is a leading producer of polysilicon, a starting material for solar PV. With its growing materials horizons, the company has recently shifted its focus towards its two core capabilities: electronic materials and green chemicals. It is accelerating its efforts towards ESG management and become an eco-friendly materials business entity. The company finds its ECH joint venture with Kumho crucial in achieving its long term ESG goals.
Kumho Petrochemical Group. Kumho P&B specializes in the manufacturing and distribution of phenols, acetones, Bisphenol A (BPA), and epoxy resins, which serve diverse industrial uses such as electric and electronics, pharmaceuticals, and paints. Maintaining strong ties with leading chemical producers worldwide, Kumho has adopted advanced technologies and is continuously striving to expand its global network of product production and distribution.
Due to solid demand from epoxy resin applications, the global ECH market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 5% from 2021 to 2028. ECH in widely used in high valued applications like paints and coatings, electric vehicles, electronic devices, wind turbines etc. Produced from ECH, Epoxy Resin is a high-function compound used in various industrial applications such as shipbuilding, automobiles, IT, construction, and civil engineering.