KOREA (SOUTH)/US: SK Global Chemical looks to build shale gas-based ethane plant

SK Global Chemical currently produces basic chemicals such as ethylene and propylene and aromatics such as benzene and toluene. All Korean petrochemical producers rely on naphtha for their chemical products while North American ones take advantage of low-cost ethane from shale gas. For this reason, some of the Korean producers are trying to build ethane plants at the source.

In addition, SK Global Chemical expects that the mass-production of its new high-functionality polyethylene "Nexlene" by the first half of next year can pay off. Developed in 2010 with its own proprietary technology, Nexlene is used to produce auto parts, cable insulation, shoe interior material, and film. Mr. Cha said, "A Nexlene plant to be completed by May next year in Ulsan at the cost of 370 billion won will produce 230,000 tons of the chemical a year."

Source: "The Korea Economic Daily", Seoul; 31 Oct 2013(Syed Rashid Ali, Karachi, Pakistan)