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Sumitomo Chemical to establish new PP compounds production base in Poland

| By Mary Bailey

Sumitomo Chemical Co. (Tokyo, Japan) has decided to establish Sumika Polymer Compounds Poland Sp.z.o.o. (SPCP), a new production base in Poland, to further enhance its polypropylene (PP) compound business. SPCP will start commercial production in the spring of 2022.

PP compounds are materials made by kneading PP with synthetic rubber, glass fibers, or inorganic fillers to improve its functionality and increase rigidity and other properties, for use in automobile bumpers, interiors and home appliances. The Sumitomo Chemical Group has a competitive advantage in short glass fiber reinforced PP compounds (GFPP). GFPP is a high-performance material that combines the light weight and superior moldability of PP with the strength and heat tolerance of glass fibers. The Group has been expanding GFPP sales globally for use in automotive parts, such as battery casings, and home appliances, such as drum cover cases for washing machines.

Many automobile and electric manufacturers have production bases in Poland and neighboring regions, such as eastern Germany and the Czech Republic. Because of the widespread adoption of electric vehicles prompted by tighter environmental regulations, strong demand for PP compounds is expected to continue. Sumitomo Chemical will have more speedy access to its customers in said regions as SPCP was set up as a wholly owned subsidiary of Sumika Polymer Compounds Europe Ltd. (SPCE). As the EU’s Circular Economy Action Plan heightens the need for recycled products, Sumitomo Chemical intends to increase the market share of GFPP containing 60 to 100% recycled PP by starting production in SPCP, following the lead of Sumitomo Chemical’s bases in the United Kingdom and France.