China ramps up biodegradable PBS capacity

By Nina Ying Sun
Assistant Managing Editor

Published: April 12, 2012 6:00 am ET

Related to this story

Topics Sustainability, Materials, Suppliers, NPE 2012

ORLANDO, FLA. (April 12, 3:30 p.m. ET) — China is ramping up production capacity for biodegradable polybutylene succinate and its copolymers. Leading producers at NPE2012 said they hope to export a larger share of their production to North America.

China New Materials Holdings Ltd. of Zibo claims to be the only company in China that integrates upstream and downstream production of PBS materials. The firm is looking to sell its PBS copolymers, including PBS co-adipate, PBS co-terephthalate and polybutylene adipate co-terephthalate — directly to U.S. processors. It has been selling through agents, said Wei Lu, executive director.

The company is launching 55 million pounds of PBS capacity, he said at NPE2012, held April 1-5 in Orlando. China New Materials also makes 1,4 butanediol, one of the building blocks for PBS, and it said vertical integration ensures quality and cost control.

PBS can be made from bio­sources and petroleum. But bio-based PBS is costly for the market, Lu said. He visited waste sorting and composting facilities in San Francisco in February, part of a business tour organized by the Beijing-based China Plastics Processing Industry Association.

“I’m convinced that there is tremendous market potential here in the U.S.,” he said.

Guangzhou-based Kingfa Science & Technology Co. Ltd. just launched 66 million pounds of PBSA capacity in Zhuhai, China, in August and is already planning a second-phase project, which will add 132 million pounds of capacity.

Kin Wong, Kingfa’s marketing director for biodegradable polymers, said about 90 percent of the PBSA exported goes to Europe and is used to make shopping bags, trash bags, toys and food-service products.

While the U.S. market is still underdeveloped, he said he’s optimistic. “Many local customers [from North and South America] stopped by our booth and asked about biodegradable materials,” he said.

Another leading supplier, Xinfu Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd. of Hang­zhou, said some U.S. customers might believe petro-based bio­degradable materials are not as “green” as bio-based materials. U.S. sales are less than 220 million pounds, said sales manager Grace Jin.

The first-time NPE exhibitor is looking to establish direct sales. “We think this model [will sell], since the material is highly technical and value-added,” Jin said.

Xinfu has annual capacity of 28.7 million pounds of PBS; it exports about half of that to Europe.

Industry leader BASF SE of Ludwigshafen, Germany, has 163 million pounds of annual PBAT capacity, sources said.

While Chinese suppliers are eager to increase their exports to the U.S., they said they are seeing great opportunities inside China. The Chinese government is expected to issue new policies to support the growth of 100 percent biodegradable materials, and other sustainable materials, through government procurement, tax relief and value-added tax refunds.


Comments

China ramps up biodegradable PBS capacity

By Nina Ying Sun
Assistant Managing Editor

Published: April 12, 2012 6:00 am ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

Barington may force a vote for Omnova board at annual meeting

January 28, 2015 3:52 pm ET

It looks like the battle between Omnova Solutions and an activist investor is heading to a vote.    More

Image

PolyOne sees sales, earnings per share climb, profit decline

January 28, 2015 3:00 pm ET

North American compounding leader PolyOne Corp. posted record adjusted earnings per share in 2014, even as the firm's sales saw modest growth and its ...    More

Image

China XD to catch up on Sichuan project

January 28, 2015 2:41 pm ET

Automotive compounder China XD Plastics Co. Ltd. (Nasdaq: CXDC) has been working on its fourth production base in Nanchong, Sichuan province since...    More

Image

Plastics help Volt hit new target

January 28, 2015 1:54 pm ET

The 2016 Volt, unveiled at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit in January, features a sportier exterior design — GM calls it...    More

Image

Sika opens negotiations to acquire Axson Technologies

January 28, 2015 12:17 pm ET

Specialty chemicals maker Sika AG has entered into exclusive negotiations with Axson SAS management and shareholders to acquire its epoxy and polyuret...    More

Market Reports

Plastics in Automotive: Innovation & Emerging Trends

This special report newly released by PN and sponsored by The Conair Group examines current trends in the use of plastics in automotive, materials innovations and the changing landscape. It includes a review of legislative/regulatory activity impacting vehicle development and lightweighting, market opportunities & challenges for mold and toolmakers, innovative design strategies being implemented by major OEMs and suppliers, as well as a review of key indicators in Canada, Mexico, Brazil and China.

Learn more

Plastics Recycling Trends in North America

This report is a review and analysis of the North American Plastics Recycling Industry, including key trends and statistics based on 2013 performance. We examine market environment factors, regulatory issues, industry challenges, key drivers and emerging trends in post-consumer and post-industrial recycling.

Learn more

Injection Molding Market Analysis & Processor Rankings

Plastics News BUNDLED package contains our in-depth Market Analysis of the Injection Molding segment. You will gain keen insight on current trends and our economic outlook.

As a BONUS this includes PN's updated 2014 database of North American Injection Molders RANKED by sales volume. Sort, merge, mail & prospect by end market, materials processed, region, # of plants and more.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

February 4, 2015 - February 6, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

June 2, 2015 - June 3, 2015Plastics Financial Summit - Chicago 2015

September 16, 2015 - September 18, 2015Plastics Caps & Closures - September 2015

More Events