Malaysia Materials

Idemitsu Kosan to boost engineering plastic output in Malaysia as EV, telecoms demand rise

19, Nov. 2019

Products using SPS resins (L: radome for vehicle rador, R: print circuit board connector) (Photo courtesy of Idemitsu Kosan)

KUALA LUMPUR, NNA – Major Japanese oil refiner Idemitsu Kosan Co. will double its global output of an engineering plastic to meet growing demand for electric vehicles and telecommunications devices.

The company said in a statement last Thursday it will build a facility to produce syndiotactic polystyrene (SPS) resin in the southernmost Malaysian state of Johor. When operational in August 2022, it will have a capacity to churn out 9,000 tons of the product yearly.

The move will bring its combined SPS resin production capacity with that of a plant in Chiba Prefecture, east of Tokyo, to 18,000 tons a year, the statement said.

SPS resin is a type of engineering plastic that Idemitsu began producing under the Xarec brand for the global market in 1997.

Demand for the efficient product, which features heat and water-resistance, insulation as well as radio wave permeability, has risen 10 percent annually as it is used in making EV parts and antennas for high-speed 5G telecom devices, an Idemitsu spokeswoman told NNA.

The Japanese refiner has picked Johor to boost output as the firm produces styrene monomer, one of raw materials for SPS resin, in the state, which is also located near the growing Southeast Asia market, the statement said.

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