Brussels - BorsodChem Zrt has announced that it will carry out a major revamp of its second plant to make MDI (methylene diphenyl diisocyanate) at Kazincbarcika in Hungary this summer. The move will increase its capacity to 240 kilotonnes per annum (ktpa) from the current figure of 150 ktpa.
The announcement comes after the Hungarian isocyanates producer, now owned by Chinese company Wanhua Industrial Group Co. Ltd, released a 28 April statement saying that construction of its new TDI (toluene di-isocyanate) plant in Kazinbarcika is on schedule.
This MDI expansion will require a major investment, said the company. It will "further improve product quality as well as consistency and stability of supply," BorsodChem added.
BorsodChem is the only European manufacturer that will raise its MDI capacity this year, the company emphasised.
Together with the 800 ktpa MDI capacity of its sister company Yantai Wanhua Polyurethanes in China, Wanhua Group will advance to become the world's number three MDI manufacturer, the statement added.
BorsodChem added that to complete the expansion of the Kazincbarcika MDI-2 plant it will need to shut down the plant for a period of seven weeks, starting from 22 July.
Although this is a period of lower market demand, BorsodChem anticipates that it will lead to some business disruption. While BorsodChem aims reduce the impact as much as possible, "the available material will be on strict allocation," the company added.
MDI is in short supply at present, and BorsodChem noted that the extra capacity will help it meet anticipated needs in the polyurethanes market in years to come.