Recycling: Petronas Chemicals to construct Asia’s largest recycling plant; Synpet to invest EUR100 mn in Antwerp recycling plant

Petronas Chemicals to construct Asia’s largest recycling plant

Malaysia’s Petronas Chemicals Group (PCG) says has reached the final investment decision (FID) to construct Asia’s largest advanced chemical recycling plant with a capacity of 33 kilotonnes/year. The plant which will be located in Pengerang, Johor, is targeted to be operational by the first half of 2026.

The FID announcement also saw the signing of the Technology License Agreement (TLA) between PCG’s subsidiary and Plastic Energy Limited (Plastic Energy) and awarding of the Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) to Mutiara Etnik Sdn Bhd.

As part of PCG’s New Plastics Economy agenda to support the transition towards a circular economy and contribute to a sustainable plastics ecosystem, the plant will unlock plastics waste chemical recycling capabilities in Malaysia through the conversion of end-of-life plastics into pyrolysis oil or Tacoil, which can be used as chemical feedstock towards the production of sustainable plastics.

“Through the advanced chemical recycling plant, we envision driving innovation across the plastics value chain while creating opportunities for all parties, from waste collectors to manufacturers, to jointly contribute to the circular plastics economy. This enables us to propel the nation’s aspiration in phasing out single-use plastics, in line with Malaysia’s Plastic Sustainability Roadmap 2021-2030, while fulfilling the growing demand from major brands for sustainable packaging,” said PCG Managing Director/CEO Mohd Yusri Mohamed Yusof.

Plastic Energy will be providing the chemical recycling technology for the plant through its patented TAC process, which heats mixed post-consumer plastic waste in the absence of oxygen. This process then produces hydrocarbon vapours, that are condensed into pyrolysis oil or Tacoil which can be used as a substitute for hydrocarbon feedstock in the production of food-grade recycled plastics.

“After starting our collaboration with PCG back in 2019, we are pleased to be chosen as the technology provider for their new chemical recycling plant in Malaysia. Together we share a common goal to reduce plastic pollution in Asia by increasing the amount of plastic waste that can be recycled, and expanding recycling infrastructure in the region,” said Carlos Monreal, CEO of Plastic Energy.

The advanced chemical recycling plant will benefit Malaysia’s plastics value chain beyond closing the loop of the plastics life cycle by creating an ecosystem that promotes the transition to a circular economy.

Synpet to invest EUR100 mn in Antwerp recycling plant border=

Meanwhile in other news, Turkish-Belgian chemical recycling company Synpet Technologies says it plans to construct its first commercial recycling plant at the Port of Antwerp. Synpet, with the backing of Swiss trading and manufacturing entity Kolmar Group - that acquired a stake in the company in a first capital round - will be investing EUR100 million in the project. Synpet originally intended to build the facility in Genk (Belgium), but has now selected Antwerp.

In the first phase in 2025, the companies aim to process 180,000 tonnes/year of wet-rejected plastic waste. By 2030, Synpet aims to have a processing capacity of 720,000 tonnes of plastic waste. It will be processed using "advanced technology" to produce circular naphtha, a primary raw material from which the industry makes plastic.

"Our first plant will be located in the port of Antwerp, in the heart of one of the largest chemical clusters in Europe," said Cem Ozsuer, CEO of Synpet Technologies, in a press release. "We are very proud to invest in the heart of Flanders, in one of Europe's most renowned and well-equipped ports."

The company had initially planned to set up in Genk. However, as Synpet will be importing a lot of southern European plastics, Antwerp, with all its facilities, was considered to be more suitable.

"We will make a sustainable contribution to the Flemish region by tackling the problem of plastic waste, reducing carbon emissions and creating sustainable jobs," Ozsuer said. "The plant will create 70 new jobs in the Antwerp region and another 25 in Brussels."

Kolmar the Swiss petrochemical and renewables trading and manufacturing company, which owns and operates biofuel assets in the US; has become a significant shareholder in Synpet and acquired the global marketing rights to the circular naphtha produced from the technology.

Synpet Technologies is a clean-tech company founded in 2014. Its process for recycling unsorted plastic waste has been tested on a demo scale since 2016, with a production unit of 15 tonnes in Istanbul, Turkey.

Synpet says its proprietary technology decomposes plastics and other various waste types to form pure hydrocarbons using water as the reagent, at a specific pressure and temperature in a wet environment. Unlike other processes such as pyrolysis or gasification, Synpet’s TCP (Thermal Conversion Process) process is said to be efficient and does not require any sorting, drying or pre-treatment of waste upstream. All waste, whatever its quality, is eligible. As long as it contains carbon, the process is capable of processing it.

At the end of the process, four products are obtained: renewable oil (naphtha) which can replace petroleum naphtha to produce new plastics and can create a true circular economy; natural gas with a high calorific value that can be used for thermal and electrical energy; biochar that can be used as fertiliser in agriculture or as a raw material, for example in cement kilns to replace coal and reduce general CO2 emissions; and a liquid organic fertiliser if the technology is applied to materials containing nitrogen, phosphorus, etc., which are present in household waste and municipal sewage sludge.


Subscribe to Get the Latest Updates from PRA  Please click here

©2023 Plastics and Rubber Asia. All rights reserved.

©2023 Plastics and Rubber Asia. All rights reserved.

Home Terms & Conditions Privacy Policy Webmail Site Map About Us


Contact Us Register Subscribe


Instagram icon