Kolon BASF innoPOM Inc., the 50:50 joint venture between Kolon Plastics and BASF established in 2016, has commenced operations at its new polyoxymethylene (POM) production plant in Gimcheon, Korea, the company announced on Oct 25.
Construction of the new facility took 27 months and proceeded uneventfully. Adding an extra POM production capacity of 70,000 metric tons per year to Kolon Plastics’ existing capacity of 80,000 metric tons, this brings total annual capacity up to 150,000 metric tons and creates the world’s largest POM plant production facility.
The increased capacity at Kolon BASF innoPOM guarantees a stable supply of POM to Kolon Plastics and BASF, each of which has their own sales network, enabling the two companies to cater to increasing market demand.
Characterised by a high strength and resilience, friction performance and chemical resistance, POM is widely used in automotive manufacturing as well as in electric and electronic goods. Such as POM Wheel Gears, 42% of the world’s demand is used for manufacturing key vehicle components such as fuel pumps and safety belts.
The shared facility, with separate production systems customized to serve each company’s customers, will enable a highly competitive form of cooperation. Kocetal from Kolon Plastics and Ultraform from BASF will be produced at the new plant using technologies from the two companies – in the case of BASF, to the same quality control standards as in Germany.
Calling the new plant an “industry benchmark for the production of POM”, Raimar Jahn, President, Performance Materials, BASF, stressed that with this – the company’s first POM production plant in Asia – it is now in the position to provide “a stable supply of high-quality POM to the Asia Pacific region, as well as to the rest of the world”.
“We hope to continue this partnership in other areas of business as well,” said Yeong-Bom Kim, joint-representative of Kolon BASF innoPOM and representative director of Kolon Plastics.
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