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Glass Production in Emerging Economies to Drive Soda Ash Demand

September 13, 2010

LONDON, September 13, 2010 /PRNewswire/ –

– Soda Ash: Market Outlook to 2015 (10th edition, 2010)

Global consumption of soda ash fell by 7.6% in 2009 to 44Mt, following
growth of 4.2%py between 2000 and 2008. Consumers in the glass industry,
which accounts for 53% of total demand, scaled back purchases during the
global economic downturn. The fall was compounded by lower detergent and
chemical output, the other major end-uses for soda ash.

Emerging economies have been the growth driver for soda ash over the last
decade with rising GDP and urbanisation leading to higher per capita use of
products manufactured using soda ash. China was one of only a handful of
countries showing a positive increase in soda ash consumption in 2009 and was
responsible for 90% of world growth between 2000 and 2009. In industrialised
economies, however, demand for soda ash has been flat due to the maturity of
products using soda ash in the market, as well as substitution and
competition pressures.

Future demand for soda ash, forecast to grow at 3%py over the next five
years, will be led by flat glass, detergents and water treatment. The use of
soda ash in mining and metals and flue gas desulphurisation might also spur
increased demand. Emerging economies, particularly China and the wider
Southeast Asia region, but also the Middle East, South Asia and South
America
, will continue to provide the best opportunities for soda ash demand
growth on a regional basis. The outlook for developed economies is more
uncertain.

Rationalisation looms over soda ash producers

Production of soda ash is highly concentrated in China, the USA and
Europe, together accounted for 80% of total production in 2009. A period of
acquisitions in the mid- to late- 2000s has consolidated ownership of
capacity. Tata Chemicals and Nirma of India now have operations in more than
one region, and operate both natural and synthetic capacity. Chinese
companies have expanded synthetic capacity rapidly and some are now of a size
comparable with natural producers in the USA. New capacity has also been
opened in other countries, most recently in Turkey in 2009.

Total capacity for soda ash production stands at 63Mtpy in mid-2010.
Operating rates are recovering from lows of 70% in 2009, but are still some
way off reaching the 85% seen in 2007/08. New and expansion projects have the
potential to add 15Mtpy to total capacity by 2015, with China contributing a
significant proportion to this total and other emerging economies the
remainder. China appears to be rapidly heading towards a position of
substantial overcapacity, although tighter government targets for raw
material and energy consumption could see some rationalisation of older
capacity by 2015.

Can the USA win back deep-sea market share from China?

China and the USA compete for sales in the deep-sea export markets of
East/Southeast Asia and South America, which lack sufficient domestic soda
ash capacity. Elsewhere, soda ash rarely moves beyond the region in which it
is produced, due to its low cost and high bulk characteristics. China is one
of only a few countries that has been able to compete with lower-cost natural
soda ash exported from the USA, primarily as costs at synthetic plants were
below the norm in other regions, but also due its control of global shipping.

Input costs for synthetic soda ash plants are very unlikely to fall back
to early-2000s levels, and will in all probability increase; the lower-cost
of natural soda ash production could therefore present an opportunity for
producers in the USA, Kenya and Turkey to restore and/or increase market
share in deep-sea markets, which continue to grow. Exports of lower-cost soda
ash from Turkey are likely to put pressure on higher-cost synthetic producers
in Europe, with some capacity rationalisation expected in Europe in the
near-term also.

Soda ash prices tracking energy costs

Energy prices rose significantly in late 2007/early 2008, increasing
input costs at both natural and synthetic soda ash plants, the latter being
notably more energy-intensive. Rising input costs caused prices of soda ash
to increase across all regions between 2006 and 2008. The downturn in demand
in 2009 prompted producers to drop prices accordingly, but in general these
lagged the fall in the price of energy as most sales are made on long-term
contracts.

Prices reached a floor in late 2009/early 2010 when new contracts were
being negotiated, but are unlikely to fall further as energy costs remain
high compared to the early-2000s. In the short-term, prices will continue to
track energy costs and could be back at 2008 levels by 2015. Any upside in
pricing will come from a return to high utilisation rates; however, capacity
seems more than plentiful to meet demand in the period to 2015 and increased
competition between suppliers could prevent significant price rises.

Note to editors

The report contains 402 pages, 179 tables and 178 figures. It provides a
detailed review of the industry, with subsections on the activities of the
leading producing companies. It also analyses consumption, trade and prices.

For further information or a review copy of this report, please contact

Robert Baylis (robert@roskill.co.uk). To receive press releases via email,
please contact Prakash Ramachandran (prakash@roskill.co.uk).

    Table of Contents
                                                                        Page

    1            Summary                                                   1

    2            Occurrence, extraction and processing of soda ash         7
    2.1          Occurrence of natural soda ash                            8
    2.2          Extraction of natural soda ash                           10
    2.2.1        Trona extraction in the Green River Basin                10
    2.2.2        Trona extraction at Lake Magadi                          11
    2.2.3        Brine extraction at Searles Lake and Sua Pan             11
    2.2.4        Nahcolite extraction in the Piceance Creek Basin         12
    2.2.5        Trona and nahcolite extraction in China                  12
    2.3          Natural soda ash processing                              12
    2.3.1        Monohydrate process                                      13
    2.3.2        Sesquicarbonate process                                  14
    2.4          Synthetic soda ash                                       14
    2.4.1        Solvay process                                           14
    2.4.2        Hou (Ammonium Chloride Co-production or Dual) process    18
    2.4.3        New Asahi Process                                        19
    2.4.4        Akzo Dry Lime Process                                    20
    2.4.5        Nepheline syenite process                                20
    2.5          Production costs                                         22
    2.5.1        Solvay process                                           23
    2.5.2        Hou process                                              27
    2.5.3        Natural soda ash                                         28
    3            World soda ash production capacity                       32
    3.1          Soda ash production capacity by region                   32
    3.2          Soda ash production capacity by company and country      34
    3.2.1        Natural soda ash production capacity                     35
    3.2.2        Synthetic soda ash production capacity                   36
    3.3          Recent changes in soda ash production capacity           39
    3.4          Outlook for soda ash production capacity                 42
    4            World production of soda ash                             46
    4.1          Production of soda ash by region                         46
    4.2          Production of soda ash by country                        47
    4.3          Production of soda ash by company                        50
    4.4          Production of soda ash by type                           52
    4.5          Operating rates by region                                53
    4.6          Outlook for soda ash supply                              56
    5            Soda ash production by country                           62
    5.1          Argentina                                                62
    5.1.1        Alcalis de la Patagonia (ALPAT)                          62
    5.2          Australia                                                63
    5.2.1        Penrice Soda Products Ltd.                               64
    5.3          Austria                                                  65
    5.4          Bangladesh                                               66
    5.5          Belarus                                                  66
    5.6          Belgium                                                  66
    5.6.1        BASF Antwerpen NV                                        67
    5.6.2        Solvay SA                                                67
    5.7          Bosnia & Herzegovina                                     69
    5.7.1        Sisecam Soda Lukavac                                     70
    5.8          Botswana                                                 70
    5.8.1        Botswana Ash                                             71
    5.9          Brazil                                                   72
    5.9.1        Compania Nacional de Alcalis                             73
    5.1          Bulgaria                                                 74
    5.10.1       Solvay Sodi AD                                           74
    5.11         Canada                                                   75
    5.12         China                                                    76
    5.12.1       Production                                               76
    5.12.1.1     Production by province                                   77
    5.12.1.2     Production by company                                    78
    5.12.2       Production methods                                       80
    5.12.3       Soda ash grades                                          81
    5.12.4       Trade in soda ash                                        82
    5.12.5       Future trends                                            84
    5.12.6       Synthetic soda ash producers in China                    84
    5.12.6.1     Shandong Haihua Group Co. Ltd.                           85
    5.12.6.2     Tangshan SanYou Chemical Co. Ltd.                        86
    5.12.6.3     Hubei Shuanghuan Science & Technology Co. Ltd.           88
    5.12.6.4     Bohai Chemical Tianjin Soda Plant                        88
    5.12.6.5     Nanjing Chemical Industry Co. Ltd. (NCI)                 89
    5.12.6.6     Sichuan Leshan Hebang Chemical Co. Ltd.                  90
    5.12.6.7     Qinghai Soda Co. Ltd.                                    90
    5.12.6.8     Qingdao Soda Ash Industry                                90
    5.12.6.9     Dahua Group Dalian Chemical Industry Co. Ltd.            91
    5.12.6.10    Jiangsu Debang Chemical Industrial Co. Ltd.              92
    5.12.6.11    Honghe Chemical Industry Co. Ltd.                        92
    5.12.6.12    Kunshan Jingang Industry Group                           92
    5.12.6.13    Jiangsu Huachang Chemical Co. Ltd.                       93
    5.12.6.14    Potential new synthetic soda ash producers in China      93
    5.12.7       Natural soda ash producers in China                      93
    5.12.7.1     Henan Xinyang Tongbai Anpeng Soda Mine Co. Ltd.          94
    5.12.7.2     Mengxilian Chemical Industry Co. Ltd.                    95
    5.12.7.3     Tongbai Haijing Alkali Industry Co. Ltd.                 95
    5.12.7.4     Inner Mongolia Jilantai Jijie Chemical Co. Ltd.          95
    5.12.7.5     Inner Mongolia Yuan Xing Energy Co. Ltd.                 95
    5.12.7.6     Inner Mongolia Wuhai Chemical Co. Ltd.                   96
    5.12.7.7     Inner Mongolia Ihju Chemical Import and Export Ltd.      96
    5.13         Czech Republic                                           97
    5.14         Egypt                                                    97
    5.14.1       Solvay Alexandria Soda                                   97
    5.15         Ethiopia                                                 98
    5.15.1       Abjata Soda Ash Share Company (ASASC)                    98
    5.16         France                                                   99
    5.16.1       Novacarb                                                100
    5.16.2       Solvay Carbonate France                                 101
    5.17         Germany                                                 101
    5.17.1       Solvay Soda Deutschland GmbH                            103
    5.17.2       Sodawerk Stassfurt GmbH & Co. KG                        104
    5.18         India                                                   104
    5.18.1       Tata Chemicals Ltd.                                     108
    5.18.2       Nirma Ltd.                                              110
    5.18.3       Gujarat Heavy Chemicals Limited                         111
    5.18.4       Dhrangadhra Chemical Works                              112
    5.18.5       Tuticorin Alkali Chemicals & Fertilisers Ltd.           113
    5.19         Indonesia                                               114
    5.2          Iran                                                    116
    5.20.1       Kaveh Soda                                              116
    5.20.2       Shiraz Petrochemical Co.                                117
    5.20.3       Sulfurin Co.                                            117
    5.21         Italy                                                   117
    5.21.1       Solvay Chimica Italia SpA                               119
    5.22         Japan                                                   119
    5.22.1       Central Glass Co., Ltd.                                 121
    5.22.2       Tokuyama Corp.                                          122
    5.23         Kazakhstan                                              122
    5.24         Kenya                                                   123
    5.24.1       Magadi Soda Co.                                         124
    5.25         Malaysia                                                125
    5.26         Mexico                                                  126
    5.26.1       Industria del Alcali SA de CV                           127
    5.26.2       Tronamex SA de CV                                       127
    5.27         Netherlands                                             128
    5.27.1       Brunner Mond BV                                         129
    5.28         North Korea                                             130
    5.28.1       Sunchon Vinalon                                         130
    5.29         Oman                                                    130
    5.3          Pakistan                                                130
    5.30.1       ICI Pakistan                                            132
    5.30.2       Olympia Chemicals Ltd.                                  132
    5.31         Poland                                                  133
    5.31.1       Soda Polska Ciech Sp.                                   134
    5.32         Portugal                                                135
    5.32.1       Solvay (Produtos Quimicos)                              136
    5.33         Romania                                                 136
    5.33.1       Uzinele Sodice Govora                                   138
    5.33.2       GHCL Upsom Ocna Mures                                   138
    5.34         Russia                                                  139
    5.34.1       Soda Sterlitamak                                        142
    5.34.2       Berezniki Soda Plant                                    142
    5.34.3       Achinsk Alumina Refinery (AGK-Rusal)                    143
    5.34.4       Pikalevo Alumina Plant                                  144
    5.35         Saudi Arabia                                            145
    5.36         South Africa                                            146
    5.37         South Korea                                             147
    5.38         Spain                                                   148
    5.38.1       Solvay (Electrolisis de Torrelavega AEI)                150
    5.39         Taiwan                                                  151
    5.4          Tanzania                                                151
    5.41         Thailand                                                152
    5.42         Turkey                                                  153
    5.42.1       Soda Sanayii AS                                         155
    5.42.2       Eti Soda AS                                             156
    5.42.3       Rio Tur Madencilik                                      156
    5.43         Turkmenistan                                            156
    5.44         Ukraine                                                 156
    5.44.1       Crimsoda                                                158
    5.44.2       JSC Lisichansk Soda                                     159
    5.45         UK                                                      159
    5.45.1       Brunner Mond                                            161
    5.46         USA                                                     162
    5.46.1       Production of soda ash from trona in the USA            165
    5.46.1.1     Trona mining royalty issues in the USA                  168
    5.46.1.2     FMC Wyoming Corp.                                       169
    5.46.1.3     General Chemical (Soda Ash) Partners                    170
    5.46.1.4     OCI Chemical Corp.                                      171
    5.46.1.5     Solvay Chemicals Inc.                                   172
    5.46.1.6     Church & Dwight Co. Inc.                                173
    5.46.1.7     Wold Trona Co.                                          173
    5.46.2       Production of soda ash from nahcolite in Colorado       174
    5.46.2.1     American Soda LLP                                       174
    5.46.2.2     Natural Soda Inc.                                       175
    5.46.3       Production of soda ash from trona in California         176
    5.46.3.1     Searles Valley Minerals Inc. (SVM)                      176
    5.46.3.2     Rio Tinto Borax                                         177
    5.47         Uzbekistan                                              177
    5.47.1       Kungrad Soda Plant                                      177
    6            International trade in soda ash                         179
    6.1          World exports of soda ash                               179
    6.2          World imports of soda ash                               181
    6.3          Regional trade in soda ash                              183
    6.3.1        Soda ash trade from North America                       185
    6.3.2        Soda ash trade to/from East/Southeast Asia              187
    6.3.3        Soda ash trade to/from Eastern Europe                   189
    6.3.4        Soda ash trade to/from Western Europe                   191
    6.3.5        Soda ash trade to/from South Asia                       194
    6.3.6        Soda ash trade from the CIS                             196
    6.3.7        Soda ash trade to/from Africa                           197
    6.3.8        Soda ash trade to/from the Middle East                  199
    6.3.9        Soda ash trade to/from other regions                    201
    6.4          Transport costs                                         202
    7            World consumption of soda ash                           208
    7.1          Consumption of soda ash by region                       208
    7.2          Consumption of soda ash by country                      209
    7.3          Consumption of soda ash by end use                      211
    7.4          Consumption of soda ash in East and Southeast Asia      214
    7.5          Consumption of soda ash in North America                216
    7.6          Consumption of soda ash in Europe                       218
    7.7          Consumption of soda ash in the CIS                      219
    7.8          Consumption of soda ash in South Asia                   219
    7.9          Consumption of soda ash in other regions                220
    7.1          Outlook for soda ash demand to 2015                     220
    8            Use of soda ash in glass                                225
    8.1          Manufacture of glass                                    226
    8.1.1        Specifications for soda ash used in glass               227
    8.1.2        Substitution of soda ash in glass                       228
    8.1.2.1      Dolomite                                                228
    8.1.2.2      Feldspar and nepheline syenite                          229
    8.1.2.3      Other raw materials                                     229
    8.1.2.4      Cullet                                                  230
    8.2          Production of glass by region                           231
    8.2.1        Production of glass in East/Southeast Asia              231
    8.2.1.1      China                                                   232
    8.2.1.2      Japan                                                   238
    8.2.1.3      Indonesia                                               240
    8.2.1.4      Taiwan                                                  241
    8.2.1.5      South Korea                                             242
    8.2.1.6      Other East/Southeast Asia                               242
    8.2.2        Production of glass in Europe                           244
    8.2.3        Production of glass in North America                    249
    8.2.4        Production of glass in South Asia                       251
    8.2.5        Production of glass in the CIS                          254
    8.2.6        Production of glass in the Middle East                  257
    8.2.7        Production of glass in South and Central America        260
    8.2.8        Production of glass in Africa                           261
    8.2.9        Production of glass in Oceania                          264
    8.3          Production of glass by type                             264
    8.4          Container glass                                         265
    8.4.1        Production of container glass                           265
    8.4.2        Producers of container glass                            267
    8.4.2.1      Owens Illinois (O-I)                                    268
    8.4.2.2      Saint-Gobain                                            269
    8.4.3        Demand for container glass                              269
    8.4.4        Lightweighting in container glass                       272
    8.4.5        Alternative packaging materials                         273
    8.4.5.1      Competition from PET                                    274
    8.4.5.2      Competition from aluminium and tinplate                 276
    8.4.6        Recycling                                               278
    8.4.7        Outlook for container glass                             281
    8.5          Flat glass                                              283
    8.5.1        Production of flat glass                                284
    8.5.2        Producers of flat glass                                 284
    8.5.2.1      Asahi Glass                                             286
    8.5.2.2      NSG Pilkington                                          287
    8.5.2.3      Saint-Gobain                                            289
    8.5.2.4      Guardian Industries                                     289
    8.5.2.5      Taiwan Glass                                            290
    8.5.2.6      PPG                                                     291
    8.5.3        Demand for flat glass                                   291
    8.5.3.1      Demand for flat glass in construction                   293
    8.5.3.2      Demand for automotive glass                             294
    8.5.4        Recycling                                               296
    8.5.5        Outlook for flat glass                                  297
    8.6          Fibreglass                                              299
    8.6.1        Manufacture of textile-grade fibreglass                 300
    8.6.2        Manufacture of insulation-grade fibreglass              301
    8.6.3        Production of fibreglass                                301
    8.6.4        Producers of fibreglass                                 304
    8.6.4.1      Owens Corning                                           305
    8.6.4.2      Saint-Gobain                                            306
    8.6.4.3      PPG                                                     308
    8.6.4.4      Johns Manville                                          308
    8.6.5        Demand for fibreglass                                   309
    8.6.5.1      Demand for textile-grade fibreglass                     309
    8.6.5.2      Demand for insulation-grade fibreglass                  311
    8.6.6        Outlook for fibreglass demand                           312
    8.7          Speciality glass products                               314
    8.7.1        Glassware                                               314
    8.7.2        Display panel glass                                     315
    8.7.2.1      CRT glass production                                    317
    8.7.2.2      FPD glass production                                    319
    8.7.2.3      Outlook for display glass                               320
    8.7.3        Optical fibres                                          322
    8.8          Consumption of soda ash in glass                        322
    8.8.1        Outlook for soda ash demand in glass                    326
    9            Use of soda ash in sodium chemicals                     329
    9.1          Sodium silicates                                        329
    9.1.1        Manufacture of sodium silicates                         329
    9.1.2        Production of sodium silicates                          330
    9.1.3        Producers of sodium silicates                           331
    9.1.4        Consumption of sodium silicates                         337
    9.1.4.1      Use of sodium silicates in detergents                   338
    9.1.4.2      Use of sodium silicate in speciality silicas production 339
    9.1.5        Future demand for sodium silicates                      341
    9.2          Sodium tripolyphosphate (STPP)                          342
    9.2.1        Producers of STPP                                       343
    9.2.2        Markets for STPP                                        345
    9.2.3        Future demand for STPP                                  347
    9.3          Sodium bicarbonate                                      347
    9.3.1        Producers of sodium bicarbonate                         349
    9.3.2        Production of sodium bicarbonate                        352
    9.3.3        World consumption of sodium bicarbonate                 353
    9.3.4        Future demand for sodium bicarbonate                    354
    9.4          Sodium percarbonate                                     354
    9.5          Sodium chromate and dichromate                          355
    9.5.1        World production capacity for chromium chemicals        356
    9.5.2        Markets for chromium chemicals                          357
    9.5.3        Future demand for chromium chemicals                    358
    9.6          Other sodium chemicals                                  359
    9.6.1        Caustic soda                                            359
    9.6.2        Sodium sesquicarbonate                                  360
    9.6.3        Sodium carbonate monohydrate/decahydrate                361
    9.6.4        Sodium hexacyanoferrate                                 361
    9.7          Consumption of soda ash in sodium chemicals             362
    9.7.1        Outlook for soda ash demand in chemicals manufacture    363
    10           Use of soda ash in soaps and detergents                 365
    10.1         Manufacture of soaps and detergents                     365
    10.2         Soap and detergent production                           367
    10.3         Consumption of soda ash in soaps and detergents         368
    10.4         Outlook for soda ash demand in soaps and detergents     369
    11           Use of soda ash in other applications                   371
    11.1         Use of soda ash in metals and mining                    371
    11.1.1       Lead smelting                                           372
    11.1.2       Alumina production                                      372
    11.1.3       Strontium carbonate production                          373
    11.1.4       Lithium carbonate production                            375
    11.1.5       Calcium bentonite conversion                            376
    11.1.6       Bromine production                                      377
    11.1.7       Uranium production                                      377
    11.2         Use of soda ash in water treatment                      378
    11.3         Use of soda ash in flue gas desulphurisation            379
    11.4         Use of soda ash in pulp and paper                       381
    11.5         Use of soda ash in drilling fluids                      383
    11.6         Use of soda ash in electroplating                       384
    11.7         Use of soda ash in hydrogen sulphide recovery           384
    11.8         Use of soda ash in foundry sands                        385
    11.9         Other uses of soda ash                                  385
    12           Prices of soda ash                                      386
    12.1         Soda ash prices in the USA                              386
    12.2         Soda ash prices in Europe                               391
    12.3         Soda ash prices in China                                395
    12.4         Soda ash prices in India                                397
    12.5         Comparison of US, Chinese and Indian soda ash prices    398
    12.6         Soda ash prices in other countries                      399
    12.7         Outlook for soda ash prices                             400

Soda Ash: Market Outlook to 2015 (11th edition, 2010) is available at
GBP3500 / US$7000 / EUR5600 from Roskill Information Services Ltd, 27a
Leopold Road, London SW19 7BB, England. Tel: +44-20-8944-0066. Fax
+44-20-8947-9568 Email: info@roskill.co.uk Web:
http://www.roskill.com/soda-ash

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