S Korea’s Asacco mulls Ulsan VAM plant; commissioning in 2014

10 February 2012 03:22  [Source: ICIS news]

SINGAPORE (ICIS)--South Korea’s Asia Acetyls Co (Asacco) is considering building a 300,000 tonne/year vinyl acetate monomer (VAM) plant in Ulsan that is targeted for commissioning in early 2014, a company official said on Friday.

“The project is currently in the technical stage of design and engineering,” the official said, adding that the producer is also conducting studies on the economics of the project and surveying the China market.

“There are several VAM plant expansion plans in China now, therefore we’re monitoring the impact on eastern China’s import market,” he said.

“But we’re not worried because most of these projects will be located in western China, hence there will be difficulty transferring the product to eastern China and so eastern China will remain an import market,” he added.

Most of the China VAM plant expansions in western China are based on calcium carbide feedstock and the output will be mainly for captive usage, according to the source.

“The Ulsan VAM project is scheduled for mechanical completion and commercial commissioning in early 2014, in line with the completion of downstream ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) projects,” he said.

Asacco currently operates a 210,000 tonne/year VAM plant at Ulsan.

Asacco is a joint venture between UK’s BP, US-based Dow Chemical and South Korea’s Samsung.

Other major VAM producers in the Asian market include US-headquartered Celanese, Taiwan’s Dairen Chemical Corp (DCC), China’s Sinopec Sichuan Vinylon Works, Japan VAM & Poval and Showa Denko, and Saudi Arabia’s International Vinyl Acetate Co (IVC).

By: Helen Lee
+65 6780 4359

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