Chinese police, protestors, clash over proposed paraxylene plant

By Steve Toloken
Staff Reporter / Asia Bureau Chief

Published: March 31, 2014 2:53 pm ET
Updated: March 31, 2014 2:57 pm ET

Related to this story

Topics Public Policy, Materials, Polyethylene, Materials Suppliers, China

Chinese police fought March 30 with protestors marching against a proposed chemical plant making paraxylene, a building block for PET and fibers, in the southern city of Maoming.

According to the Maoming government, a “rational and peaceful” protest against a PX plant turned violent as some people started throwing stones and water bottles.

Chinese users of social media posted descriptions and pictures of violence and bloody scenes, but the posts and photos cannot be confirmed.

The Maoming government said in a statement that the incident caused no “death.” It did not give information about injuries.

A protester interviewed by the Wall Street Journal said the protest was peaceful until in the evening when he saw people destroying public facilities such as bus stops and clashing with the police.

A second statement on the government website said the protest was illegal because it said no applications were made to local authorities to hold the march and it urged the public to ''not let the criminals take advantage'' of the situation.

The march in Maoming, a petrochemical hub in Guangdong province, is the latest in a series of public protests in recent years against proposed chemical plants in China, directed at factories making plastics pre-cursor chemicals such as PX.

Some of the previous protests have resulted in the projects being moved or scrapped.

Opposition to the Maoming PX project, a joint venture of the local government and Sinopec, has apparently been brewing for quite some time.

A 2009 story in the state-run China Daily newspaper claimed there were ''strong protests from nearby residents'' in the city who were worried about pollution and health problems. Some local residents have since been actively against the plant.

Maoming is home to one of four petrochemical hubs under construction in Guangdong province, which has China's largest local plastics industry.

A provincial website said in 2011 that two PX factories were planned for Maoming, along with large oil refining, ethylene and fine chemicals facilities.

The Maoming government said it welcomed public opinion expressed through “proper channels” and urged residents not to believe rumors and to study the science behind PX.

Maoming also has been in the public spotlight for corruption scandals, the latest being a March 28 announcement of an investigation of a local official who has been retired for two years, but never had his post refilled.

A former Communist party secretary for the city was given a suspended death sentence last month for allegedly taking more than 20 million yuan ($3.25 million) in bribes, the same sentence given to his predecessor last year.

A 2011 China Daily story cited another case involving a former executive vice mayor of Maoming who confessed to receiving nearly $2 million in bribes. Prosecutors said part of that case involved money solicited for a land lease for an unidentified local chemical company.


Comments

Chinese police, protestors, clash over proposed paraxylene plant

By Steve Toloken
Staff Reporter / Asia Bureau Chief

Published: March 31, 2014 2:53 pm ET
Updated: March 31, 2014 2:57 pm ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

Ukraine's Group DF may be forced to sell Crimea-based additives plant

July 28, 2014 10:12 am ET

Group DF, the industrial business of Ukrainian tycoon Dmitry Firtash, may be forced to sell off Eastern Europe's biggest producer of titanium oxide,...    More

Image

DuPont resins help take Nike golf balls 'Fore!'ward

July 25, 2014 1:07 pm ET

It may be difficult to imagine just how much science, not to mention rubber and plastic components, go into a golf ball. But global giant DuPont Co....    More

Investigation continuing into injury at Windsor mold maker

July 25, 2014 12:57 pm ET

Canadian authorities are investigating an incident in which a worker's foot got caught in a machine at Crest Mold Technology Inc. in Oldcastle,...    More

Image

Bioplastics maker wins government funding

July 25, 2014 12:13 pm ET

Canadian bioplastics maker Solegear Bioplastics Inc. has won $1.6 million in funding from the government-sponsored Western Innovation Initiative...    More

Image

Report: biodegradeable plastics use in Europe to grow 12 percent

July 25, 2014 10:25 am ET

The biodegradable plastics market in Europe is forecast to witness 12 percent compound growth during 2014-19, according to TechSci Research's “E...    More

Market Reports

Plastics Recyclers Data Report & Directory

This exclusive MS Excel database contains all the companies from Plastics News' ranking of top North American Recyclers and Brokers by reprocessed volume and also includes a directory with materials processes, services offered and company contact information. Data is based on primary research by PN editorial staff.

Learn more

2014 Injection Molding Industry Report

GROWTH, OPPORTUNITY IN SIGHT FOR INJECTION MOLDERS IN 2014

In the wake of the economic turbulence earlier in this decade, molders today find themselves in much better shape. Molders are gaining a competitive advantage by investing in people, equipment and seeking inroads into new markets on a global scale.

Growth in the injection molding industry is going to be driven by low financing costs and a continued move to reshore some business.

Learn more

Shale Gas Market - Analysis of North American Region

This report highlights the impact of shale-based natural gas on the North American plastics market and features an in-depth analysis of production trends in the United States during 2013 and a forecast for 2014 and beyond.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

September 10, 2014 - September 12, 2014Plastics Caps & Closures 2014

January 14, 2015 - January 14, 2015Plastics in Automotive

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

More Events