Polyol producer Shandong Bluestar Dongda Chemical Co. Ltd is adding a 100 ktpa polyol plant by the end of next year, raising total capacity to 300 ktpa,said Liu Yi, general manager. This new facility will make a range of speciality "first class polyols." Production will be, "very different to the present types," Liu added.
Zibo, Shandong-based Bluestar Dongda, part of the huge China National Chemical Corp., currently makes polyols for all types of polyurethane uses, including polymeric and low-molecular-weight types, for domestic and international markets, said Zhang Bo, export manager for the company. The company also makes ethylene and propylene oxide, as well as prepolymers and some PU systems.
"Our present focus is on improving the process and products and raising product quality," Liu said.
The new polyols will be aimed both at the domestic market and for export, said Liu.
While the total polyurethanes business in China may be suffering, Liu said Btuestar Dongda's sales remain strong. This year, total sales will rise 15 percent, to RMB 3500 million ($550 million) from RMB 3000 million last year, he predicts.
White SBD has aggressive plans to sell in the US, it has so far made little headway, largely because the last six months "have seen low polyol prices in the US," sometimes lower than PO prices, the Bluestar Dongda executive said.
Now the company is starting to assess the US market again and is looking again to develop its polyols sales there, added Zhang. Growth in demand at the more speciality end of the polyols range is high at present, which is why the group is setting up the new plant, she said.