CHINAPLAS ’14: NatureWorks open to PLA line outside of Thailand

25 April 2014 20:07 Source:ICIS News

SHANGHAI (ICIS)--NatureWorks’s proposed polylactic acid (PLA) plant in Thailand is likely to consist of two 75,000 tonne/year lines to be built in phases, but it is open to building one of these lines at a different location in Asia if the investment incentives are attractive, a senior company executive said on Friday.

NatureWorks continues to review investment opportunities in a number of countries, including Malaysia and Singapore, which have expressed interest in attracting investments in bio-products, NatureWorks marketing and public affairs director, Steve Davies, said at the sidelines of Chinaplas, a four-day plastics and machinery exhibition in Shanghai, which ends on 26 April.

PLA is a biopolymer made by fermenting sugar.

NatureWorks currently runs a 150,000 tonne/year PLA plant in Blair, Nebraska, and exports about 30% of its output to Asia, he said.

Thai plastics processor AJ Plast has developed a biaxially oriented film using NatureWorks’s biopolymer as a substitute for conventional polypropylene (PP) resin for applications such as packaging, cassette tape and adhesive tapes, said NatureWorks.

Thailand’s PTT Global Chemical and US agribusiness major Cargill have both invested in NatureWorks.

By Chow Bee Lin