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SKC launches first overseas copper foil plant in Malaysia

SK Nexilis’ copper foil plant in Jeongeup, North Jeolla Province (SKC)
SK Nexilis’ copper foil plant in Jeongeup, North Jeolla Province (SKC)

South Korean chemicals maker SKC said Tuesday it will establish its first overseas production base for copper foils in Malaysia and that the factory would be powered by 100 percent renewable energy sources.

According to the company, its copper foil subsidiary SK Nexilis will invest 650 billion won ($587.4 million) and construct a copper foil plant with an annual production capacity of 44,000 metric tons at Kota Kinabalu Industrial Park in the state of Sabah.

“After breaking ground in the first half of this year, our goal is to begin the commercial operation of the plant in 2023. The expansion will triple SK Nexilis’ current production capacity to almost 100,000 tons,” a company official said.

SK Nexilis will power the plant 100 percent with clean energy, according to the company.

SKC said it chose Malaysia for its stable supply of electricity and low electricity prices, almost 50 percent cheaper than Korea. Since copper foil, a key component of electric vehicle batteries, takes a large amount of electricity to produce, a steady and cheap supply of electricity is crucial, the company explained.

Based on its experience of operating unmanned transportation vehicles and robots at its plant No. 4 in Jeongeup, North Jeolla Province, SK Nexilis will build and run the new factory as a smart factory, the company added.

Another Korean electronics materials producer, Iljin Materials, has been running a copper foil plant in Kuching, Malaysia, since 2017.

By Kim Byung-wook (