Nippon Shokubai launches Indonesia AA plant; signs green chems deal with Chandra Asri

Pearl Bantillo


SINGAPORE (ICIS)–Japanese producer Nippon Shokubai has inaugurated its new acrylic acid (AA) plant in Indonesia and has signed an initial deal with local producer Chandra Asri Petrochemical to explore green chemical business opportunities.

The new 100,000 tonne/year AA plant in Cilegon, Banten province operated by its subsidiary Nippon Shokubai Indonesia, raises its total AA capacity in the southeast Asian country to 240,000 tonnes/year.

The Japanese group’s global AA capacity has increased by more than 11% to 980,000 tonnes/year, it said on 24 May.

The group’s AA output goes into the manufacture of superabsorbent polymers (SAP) for disposable diapers, consumption of which is projected “to grow steadily”.

More than half of Nippon Shokubai’s total AA capacity is located in Japan at 540,000 tonnes/year, while 440,000 tonnes/year are located overseas.

Source: Nippon Shokubai

Meanwhile, the Japanese producer has inked a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Indonesia’s sole cracker operator Chandra Asri to jointly explore business opportunities for environmentally friendly or “green” chemicals.

The companies will look at the possibility of producing ‘bio’ materials such as bio-naphtha, bio-olefins, and various products that use renewable energy, to produce sustainable derivative products such as acrylic acid, acrylic ester, and SAP.

A feasibility study will be conducted on producing a ‘bio’ feedstock and creating a new green supply chain in Chandra Asri and Nippon Shokubai  Indonesia’s (NSI) existing plants in Cilegon, the companies said in a joint statement on 23 May.

Chandra Asri supplies the propylene to NSI in the production of acrylic acid that goes into the manufacture of SAP.

“We are excited to explore this potential collaboration between Chandra Asri and NIPPON SHOKUBAI Group to produce green raw materials for the rapidly growing Indonesian chemical industry,” Chandra Asri president director Erwin Ciputra said.

The project will help “meet the domestic market’s need for more environmentally friendly bio-chemical derivative products, such as green plastic, which is believed has a lower emissions and can support Indonesia’s Long-Term Strategy for Low Carbon and Climate Resilience 2050,” he said.

“Aiming to achieve carbon neutrality, through collaboration with Chandra Asri, NSI will study to establish a system to supply green raw material-based products to satisfy customers’ requirements,” NSI president director Shinichiro Yoshimoto said.

“These products will contribute to the reduction of CO2 [carbon dioxide] emissions throughout the product life cycle,” the NSI chief added.

Focus article by Pearl Bantillo

Thumbnail image: Nippon Shokubai president Kazuhiro Noda and NSI president director Shinichiro Yoshimoto were present at the Indonesian AA plant inauguration. (Source: Nippon Shokubai)


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