Global bio-polymer producer Braskem and leading Asian petrochemical company SCG Chemicals have formed a joint venture company – Braskem Siam Company – to produce bio-ethylene in Thailand.

Braskem said the project would be located in Map Ta Phut, Rayong.

The aim of the joint venture – which was subject to regulatory approval and final investment decisions by the partners – was to produce bio-ethylene from ethanol dehydration and to commercialise ‘I’m green’ bio-based polyethylene (PE) using EtE EverGreen technology, Braskem said on 17 August.

As part of the partnership, Braskem said it would provide technology it had developed in partnership with Lummus Technology, operational experience in the ethanol dehydration process and the established profile of the ‘I’m green’ brand in global markets.

A plastic made from sugarcane-based ethanol in place of traditional fossil feedstock (such as naphtha from petroleum), ‘I’m green’ is used in a range of products, from food and drink packaging to personal and home care products, toys, houseware and plastic bags.

As with regular polyethylene, I’m Green’ products could be mechanically or chemically recycled, Braskem said.

For its part, SCG Chemicals would provide expertise in high-quality polyethylene grades for different applications, operational experience in polyethylene manufacturing and market reach in Southeast Asia.

“SCGC aims to develop … environmentally-friendly polymers … to reach 1M tonnes annually by 2030 … satisfying soaring demand for environmentally-friendly plastic which has a robust growth rate, especially in Asia and Europe,” SCGC CEO and president Tanawong Areeratchakul said.

Braskem said the project would combine its experience of the bio-based plastics sector with SCGC’s position in the Asian market and expertise in PE production.

“This partnership with SCG Chemicals is aligned with our commitment to produce 1M tonnes of green products by 2030, replacing fossil with renewable feedstock, and contributing to lowering the carbon footprint of our industry,” Braskem CEO Roberto Bischoff said.