News on South Korea

News on suppliers, market trends and technology innovations in polysilicon and wafer production is selected, assessed and written for you by Bernreuter Research.

Polysilicon plant of OCI in Bintulu, a coastal city in the state of Sarawak, Malaysia

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Polysilicon manufacturer OCI is getting closer to a decision to increase the capacity of its plant in Malaysia by 30,000 to 40,000 tons. In 2024 the plant would then have a total capacity of 65,000 to 75,000 tons.

Polysilicon imports into China from 2017 through 2021

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After a steep drop in 2020, polysilicon imports into China recovered somewhat in 2021. According to Chinese customs statistics, imports grew to 114,203 metric tons, an increase of 13.3% year over year.

Chemical factory of Hanwha Solutions

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The US$160 million investment of Hanwha Solutions, the world’s sixth largest solar module supplier, in U.S. polysilicon maker REC Silicon only makes sense with new wafer production capacity.

Polysilicon EBITDA margins of Daqo, Wacker, OCI and REC Silicon from Q3 2020 through Q3 2021

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Polysilicon manufacturers Daqo, Wacker and OCI compensate the price spike of silicon metal feedstock and still increase their high margins, driven by strong demand in the third quarter.

Polysilicon EBITDA margins of Daqo, OCI, Wacker and REC Silicon from Q2 2020 through Q2 2021

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While non-Chinese polysilicon manufacturers OCI and Wacker enjoy high margins, Xinjiang-based Daqo New Energy has already announced the next major expansion to 270,000 tons in China by the end of 2024.

Polysilicon plant of OCI in Bintulu, a coastal city in the state of Sarawak, Malaysia

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South Korean chemicals group OCI is considering expanding the capacity of its polysilicon plant in Malaysia to 95,000 tons, possibly fueled by demand for polysilicon untainted by forced labor in Xinjiang.

Polysilicon EBITDA margins of Daqo, OCI, Wacker and REC Silicon from Q4 2019 through Q4 2020

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The strong rise of polysilicon prices since mid-2020 has led the results of non-Chinese manufacturers Wacker and OCI back into positive territory. EBITDA in the second half improved significantly.

Polysilicon plant of OCI in Bintulu, a coastal city in the state of Sarawak, Malaysia

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OCI’s Malaysian polysilicon subsidiary has signed a three-year supply contract with Longi, the world’s largest solar wafer maker. The volume of 77,700 tons will fill OCI’s production capacity for the most part.

Wacker’s integrated chemical factory in Burghausen, Bavaria

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Strongly reduced demand for solar-grade polysilicon due to the Covid-19 pandemic and lower prices have left their mark in the financial figures of Wacker and OCI for the second quarter.

Sales, operating income/loss and EBITDA of OCI’s Basic Chemical division (including polysilicon) from Q1 2019 through Q1 2020

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South Korean chemicals group OCI reduced the operating loss of its Basic Chemical division, which features polysilicon as main product, by 61% in the first quarter after closing its factory in Gunsan in February.