Lotte Ineos to Build Third VAM Plant in Korea

08.02.2023 - Lotte Ineos Chemical, a joint venture of South Korea’s Lotte Chemical and UK-managed Ineos, has announced plans to increase overall production capacity for vinyl acetate monomer (VAM) to 700,000 t/y from 450,000 t/y currently.

A new 250,000 t/y production line is scheduled to start-up by the end of 2025 on land the JV has purchased build next to an existing unit in Ulsan, South Korea. Lotte Engineering & Construction has commenced Front-End Engineering Design (FEED) work on the project.

David Brooks, CEO of Ineos Acetyls, said the new facility, which will use “well proven” Ineos technology, will support its customers’ growth plans in North East Asia and globally.

Alongside applications in food packaging, solar panels, car windshields, polarizing films, adhesives and paints, Brooks noted that in recent years, VAM demand has increased significantly to meet global solar power generation.

Last year, Ineos abandoned plans to build a major new VAM plant in the UK, saying it planned to rely on imports to fill its needs there. The company subsequently announced that its Acetyls subsidiary had initiated a feasibility study to produce VAM precursor acetic acid and downstream chemicals on the US Gulf coast.

The study was announced as due to be concluded by the end of 2023, and some reports said suggested the dimension could be world-scale.

Author: Dede Williams, Freelance Journalist