Hyosung to boost carbon fiber capacity

Korea’s Hyosung plans to invest around $825 million by 2028 in its carbon fibers business by 2028 to expand its production capacity from the current 2,000 tonnes/yr (one line) to 24,000 tonnes/yr (10 lines). The investment will become world’s single-largest carbon fiber factory.

Hyosung seeks to be among global top three producers of carbon fibers through heavy investment. Hyosung Chairman Hyun-Joon Cho (left) is pictured here with South Korean President Moon Jae-in (Photo: Business Wire)

Work for the first round of expansion is underway that will add 2,000 tonnes/yr of capacity by January 2020. The new line will be onstream in February 2020.

If 10 more lines are installed by 2028, Hyosung’s ranking in terms of global market share will rise from 11th (2 percent) as of 2019 to third (10 percent). Its employment will increase massively from current 400 employees. More than 2,300 new jobs are expected to be created by 2028.

Hyosung signed an investment agreement with South Jeolla Province and Jeonju City regarding the installation and extension of production facilities and investment support. Hyosung also concluded an “alliance MOU” with the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy and two other carbon fiber companies -- Iljin Composites Co. and KAI -- to strengthen cooperation through joint tests.

“We took notice of the future value of carbon fiber and decided to develop our own technology,” Hyosung Chairman Hyun-Joon Cho said in the signing ceremony for the agreements. “We will play a major role in turning Korea into ‘a materials powerhouse’ through further development of carbon fiber because possibilities of its downstream industries are endless and the material has opened new markets in the hydrogen economy.”

“We have been world number one in many fields including spandex and tire cords because we have stubbornly developed our own technologies all the way from materials to production processes to surpass our rivals,” Cho said. “We will keep exploring new fields to sow the seeds of other materials businesses.”

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