Mitsui Chemicals to boost polyurethane material output in S. Korea

26, Apr. 2021

Kumho Mitsui Chemicals’ MDI plant in in Yeosu, South Korea's South Jeolla Province. (Photo courtesy of Mitsui Chemicals Inc.)
Kumho Mitsui Chemicals’ MDI plant in in Yeosu, South Korea's South Jeolla Province. (Photo courtesy of Mitsui Chemicals Inc.)

SEOUL, NNA - Mitsui Chemicals Inc.'s South Korean venture will increase the production of raw materials for polyurethane in anticipation of growing demand in the country.

Kumho Mitsui Chemicals, a joint venture between the Tokyo-based company and Kumho Petrochemical Co., will invest 40 billion yen ($370 million), to raise the annual production of methylene diphenyl diisocyanate (MDI) at its plant in Yeosu, South Jeolla Province, from 410,000 tons to 610,000 tons.

The construction of a new production facility is scheduled to be completed in September 2023 with the aim of starting operations in January 2024, according to Mitsui Chemicals.

MDI is used for a wide range of products including auto parts, seat cushions attached to vehicles and furniture, and thermal insulators in buildings and refrigerators.

Mitsui Chemicals said demand for MDI is expected to increase at an average annual rate of 6 percent, with hefty growth projected globally in the housing sector, where the use of materials with higher insulation efficiency is being promoted as part of measures against global warming.

Demand for equipment to control noise, vibration and harshness in electric vehicles will likely expand as well, the company said.

Kumho Mitsui Chemicals will also introduce recycling equipment for the reuse of by-products generated in the course of manufacturing MDI in efforts to cut emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases. (NNA/Kyodo)