Toray Korean subsidiary announces plans to begin carbon fiber production

Toray Advanced Materials Korea Inc. will use manufacturing technology transferred from parent Toray Industries to produce its own carbon fiber sometime in the next decade.

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The JoongAng Daily (Korea) reported on April 26 that Toray Saehan Inc., the Korean subsidiary of carbon fiber maker Toray Industries (Tokyo, Japan), is changing its name to Toray Advanced Materials Korea Inc. and plans to begin carbon fiber production sometime in the next decade.

According to the report, Toray Advanced Materials Korea president and CEO Lee Young-kwan said the unit would invest 2.32 trillion won ($2.09 billion) between now and 2020 to develop and produce new materials, including carbon fiber. The company plans to enter four new areas of business: carbon fiber, photovoltaic materials, water treatment and components for rechargeable batteries.

The news service says Toray Industries will transfer carbon fiber manufacturing technology to its Korean subsidiary, which will build a plant in Gumi, South Gyeongsang, to produce the material, said Toray Industries president and CEO Sadayuki Sakakibara.

“Our strategy and the Korean government’s wish to build a carbon fiber industry in the country coincided,” said Sakakibara, in the report. “With the expansion of the Asian market and high cost efficiency here in Korea, we were confident in our decision.” Toray anticipates that Korean demand for carbon fiber will rise to 10,000 tons per year by 2020. Korea imported 2,340 tons of carbon fiber in 2008.

Toray Saehan was created in 1999 as a joint venture between Toray Industries and Saehan Corp. of Korea, but became a wholly owned subsidiary of Toray Industries in 2008. 

Click here for original report in Joong Ang Daily.