China/Taiwan: Two cement producers from Taiwan have reacted to potential new Chinese environmental regulations. Taiwan Cement (TCC) has announced plans to invest US$23.3m on upgrading equipment for denitrogenation and desulphurisation at its Chinese plants. Asia Cement is reportedly also evaluating similar upgrades.
Industry reports suggest that the Chinese government will likely set nitrogen oxide emissions to 300mg/m3, a level below the international standard of 400mg/m3. Upgraded equipment to meet such tougher standard costs about US$3.33m per set, which may create losses for many cement producers in China.
Only four producers out of 3000 in China currently have denitrogenation and desulphurisation processing equipment, with two based in Xiangtan, Hunan Province and another two based in Chengdu, Sichuan Province. About one third of cement makers will be unable to afford the upgrades required to meet the new regulations.
A representative of TCC said that its subsidiary Taiwan Cement International Holdings has started installing new equipment in its plant in Chongqing, aiming to decrease 60% of nitrogen oxide emissions, with similar upgrades in progress at plants in Guizhou and elsewhere.