Feedstock, Investments, Partnership

PTT-MCC signs bio-succinic acid contract with BioAmber

I’m still trying to catch up with a lot of news that came out the past few weeks but unfortunately this week is a deadline week for me for Tecnon OrbiChem’s Bio-Materials newsletter, so I’ll make some of my postings brief.

Here is one from BioAmber about its first succinic acid take-or-pay contract with PTT-MCC Biochem, a joint venture formed in 2011 between Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation and PTT Public Company Limited of Thailand.  PTT-MCC was established to develop and produce polybutylene succinate (PBS), a biodegradable plastic made from succinic acid and butanediol (BDO). The company is currently building its first PBS plant in Map Ta Phut, Rayong, Thailand, with a capacity of 20 ktpa.

The PBS plant is expected to be operational in the first half of 2015, and will consume around 14 ktpa of succinic acid at full capacity, just in time for BioAmber’s start-up in early 2015 of its 30 ktpa bio-succinic acid plant in Sarnia, Ontario, Canada.

After the commissioning of both the Sarnia bio-succinic acid plant and PTT-MCC’s PBS plant in Thailand, BioAmber will exclusively supply a minimum of 80% (11.2 ktpa) of PTT-MCC’s total bio-succinic acid needs until the end of 2017. The take-or-pay volume committed by PTT-MCC over the 3-year period represent half of the total annual quantity of bio-succinic acid that PTT-MCC plans to purchase from BioAmber.

More analysis on Tecnon OrbiChem this month about the current PBS market, who are the current PBS producers, some of the challenges in this market, and current activities of other bio-succinic acid producers for this application.

According to BioAmber’s recent Q1 2014 quarter earnings report, the Sarnia project is said to be on track in terms of schedule and budget. Engineering for the plant is over 70% complete, 95% of all equipment has been ordered and equipment deliveries have begun on site.

About Doris de Guzman

Will Green Chemistry save the world or is it hype? Doris de Guzman examines alternative processing, new technology, R&D and other sustainability initiatives aimed at preventing pollution; replacing ingredients; and using renewable feedstocks in Green Chemistry. She has been covering the oleochemicals market for 15 years and spread her beat to inorganics, biofuels and green chemistry.

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