Boston, Massachusetts – Cabot Corp. is to add over 300 kilotonnes per annum (ktpa) of carbon black capacity through a plant expansion, operational improvements, and debottlenecking projects.
The largest project involves a 160ktpa expansion at the company’s manufacturing facility in Cilegon, Indonesia, according to the company’s 21 May announcement.
The new capacity, to reach the market by early 2021, will help meet annual growth in carbon black demand of 4-5% in south east Asia, said Cabot.
Elsewhere, Cabot is investing around $50 million in debottlenecking projects and operational improvements across 18 of its carbon black facilities.
This programme, it said, will provide an extra 150ktpa of increased carbon black capacity for supply to tire, industrial rubber and speciality product market. About 50ktpa of this capacity is already on stream, with full completion due by 2021.
The combined expansions will increase Cabot’s global carbon black capacity to approximately 2,500ktpa, the company said.
Cabot’s plants are currently operating at high utilisation levels, according to Bart Kalkstein, senior vice president and president, reinforcement materials.
The expansions will enable it “to offer our customers the security of reliable supply and availability of premium products that they have come to expect from Cabot,” Kalkstein said.
On the Indonesian projects, Jeff Zhu, president, Asia Pacific region, said Cabot’s tire and industrial rubber customers are making significant investments in south east Asia, and need raw materials for their new facilities.
Acknowledging support of the Indonesian government for the investment, Zhu said the expansion showed the company’s “commitment to delivering high quality products and services from local supply sources.”
Concluding the statement, Cabot president and CEO Sean Keohane said £this new capital efficient capacity will provide a lever for growth for our Reinforcement Materials and Performance Chemicals segments and contribute to the execution of our corporate financial and strategic objectives.”