The Republic of Korea’s Hu-Chems Fine Chemicals on July 29 broke the ground for the construction of a chemical products manufacturing plant in Malaysia.

The one-billion-USD plant is being built in Bintulu coastal town in the eastern state of Sarawak, on an area of 330,000 square meters, which is expected to become a chemical industry hub in Southeast Asia.

Once completed, the plant will produce up to 600,000 tonnes of ammonia; 400,000 tonnes of nitric acid, and 200,000 tonnes of ammonium nitrate a year.

Hu-Chems, a subsidiary of Taekwang Industry Group, said it will select a construction contractor in the first half of next year and complete construction by 2018 with the goal to start commercial production in the first half of 2019.

The company revealed that the plant will enable it to secure a base to enter overseas markets and ensure a stable source of materials.

It will also enjoy the benefits of a larger export market, which is likely to serve as a platform to reinforce its leading position in the global chemical industry.-VNA