LG Chem said on Monday that it plans to expand its production lines for nitrile butadiene latex (NBL) across Asia.
It will gradually expand its lines at South Korea, China and Malaysia, the company said.
NBL is used in nitrile gloves. It is more elastic than silicon pouch and can block oxygen over five times better, LG Chem said.
Nitrile gloves are in high demand due to the pandemic.
The NBL line at Yeosu, South Korea will expand its capacity from the current 170,000 metric tonnes per year to 280,000 metric tonnes per year.
Construction has already begun last year. The line will operate at the expanded capacity in the first half of 2022, LG Chem said.
LG Chem will also expand its 100,000 metric tonnes per year line at Ningbo, China. The line will have an increased capacity of 210,000 metric tonnes per year by the first half of 2022.
The South Korean chemical firm will also build a joint factory with Malaysia that will have a capacity of 240,000 metric tonnes per year. The factory will be completed in the first half of 2023.
According to the Malaysian Rubber Glove Manufacturers Association, the global nitrile glove market is expected to grow 19% per year going forward to be worth around 12 trillion won in 2023.
LG Chem had developed NBL technology back in 2007.