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SK Global Chemical to build South Korea’s largest plastic recycling plant

14. October 2021

SK Group company SK Global Chemical is investing the equivalent of $510 million in Ulsan to build the country’s largest plastics recycling plant. The construction is seen as a signal to transform the previously petrochemical-based company into an environmentally friendly one. To launch the project, SK Global Chemical signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the city of Ulsan on July 8, 2021. The subject of the agreement is to promote plastic recycling projects. The company plans to build a plastic recycling plant using pyrolysis and depolymerization processes on an area of 160,000 square meters in Ulsan’s Mipo National Industrial Complex by 2025. Pyrolysis and depolymerization are chemical processes for recycling plastic waste. The pyrolysis plant can process up to 100,000 tons of plastic waste annually and is being built in collaboration with U.S. company Brightmark. Commissioning is planned for 2024. The pyrolysis oil produced by the process can be used as a feedstock for certain petrochemical products. Machinery and components for related recycling facilities may require Korea certification in order to be sold and used in Korea.



In addition, a polymerization plant is to be built that can process 84,000 tons of plastic waste per year. This plant is being built in collaboration with Loop Industries of Canada, a specialist in pyrolysis technology. The first part of the plant is to be built starting in 2023 and will be continuously expanded. For example, a recycling capacity of 900,000 tons is planned for 2025, and as much as 2.5 million tons for 2027. SK Global Chemical also plans to expand its recycling business to the entire Southeast Asia region. To this end, it recently invested the equivalent of $53 million for a 10 percent stake in Loop Industries. In return, SK Global Chemical received exclusive distribution rights for Loop Industries’ technology in Southeast Asia. Together, the two companies plan to build a total of four plants to process recycled PET in Asia by 2030, enabling more than 400,000 tons of PET waste to be recycled annually. The amount even exceeds the current 300,000 tons of annual PET waste from South Korea.

South Korea is considered one of the most important and innovative industrial nations in the world. Many products imported into South Korea have to be tested and certified in advance. MPR International GmbH recommends itself as a partner for your Korea certification. We gladly check for you without obligation if your products are subject to certification and create an attractive offer for you.

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MPR Author

About the author: Verena Numssen is managing director of MPR International GmbH
Publisher: MPR International GmbH

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