Japanese/Korean bio-polyol jv starts up in India


Japanese-South Korean joint venture Mitsui Chemicals & SKC Polyurethanes inaugurated a bio-polyol joint venture in India with local partner Jayant Agro-Organics and Japanese firm Itoh Oil Chemical. Known as Vithal Castor Polyols (VCP), the joint venture started producing in January bio-polyols at an 8,000-tonne/year facility in the state of Gujarat.

VCP aims to manufacture and sell bio-polyol using Indian castor oil from non-edible plants as a main raw material since 80% of the world’s castor oil is produced in India. VCP’s manufacturing plant in India will allow the company to stably supply overwhelmingly cost competitive bio-polyol.

It should be noted that as Mitsui Chemicals integrated its polyurethane business with Korean firm SKC to form MCNS, Mitsui Chemicals investment now falls under MCNS.

MCNS manufactures and sells urethane materials for wide applications including refrigerator insulation materials. In the automotive field, not only is MCNS the largest supplier of polyurethane materials for interior use to Japanese and Korean makers, it is the only manufacturer in the world to commercially supply bio-polyols derived from non-edible plants.

With the commencement of commercial operations at VCP, it will now be possible to supply bio-polyol at costs competitive to fossil fuel-derived polyol, says the company. MCNS says it aims to expand sales in automotive applications by capitalising on its strong system house network comprised of nine Asian sites, including those in Japan and South Korea, and three sites in the Americas and Europe.


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