Japan’s Mitsubishi Chemical to cut MMA, AN output

  • Market: Petrochemicals
  • 27/02/24

Japanese petrochemical producer Mitsubishi Chemical plans to stop output by July of part of its methyl methacrylate (MMA) monomer, acrylonitrile (AN) and AN derivatives production at its Hiroshima plant in southwest Japan's Hiroshima prefecture.

The company will stop production of 107,000 t/yr of MMA monomer through the acetone cyanohydrin (ACH) method using acetone and hydrogen cyanide, by-products of AN production, as feedstock. Mitsubishi Chemical will also permanently shut the 90,000 t/yr AN production facility, as well as AN derivatives including chelating agent, acetonitrile and ammonium sulphate. The firm will also withdraw from its chelating agent and acetonitrile businesses.

But Mitsubishi Chemical will continue with 110,000 t/yr of output of MMA monomer though the C4 method using C4 hydrocarbons as feedstock at the Hiroshima plant and 90,000 t/yr of AN at its Okayama plant in southwest Japan's Okayama prefecture.

Mitsubishi Chemical decided to optimise its business because of shrinking domestic demand as well as oversupply, especially from China, curbing export demand. It decided to scrap the older ACH facility that is less cost efficient than the C4 facility at its Hiroshima plant.

The firm also plans to permanently halt by the end of March 120,000 t/yr of bisphenol-A (BPA) production at its Kurosaki plant in south Japan's Fukuoka prefecture, citing oversupply, mainly from China. It will continue manufacturing BPA at its 100,000 t/yr Ibaraki plant, as well as 280,000 t/yr of feedstock phenol production capacity in east Japan's Ibaraki prefecture.


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