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Braskem reassures its commitment to a Circular Economy Forum and Digital Transformation at K 2019

Products and Solutions showcased at K Fair 2019 included a new solution for healthcare -and new resins that will positively impact circularity

Braskem showcased solutions, technologies and new partnerships focusing on Circular Economy and divulged the advances of its Digital Center at K Fair 2019, the world's largest event for the plastics and rubbers industry.

The fair was a great opportunity for Braskem, a CDP Climate A, CDP Water A and CDP Supply A listed company, to showcase its commitments to the Circular Economy and invite clients and visitors to get involved in its quest for using renewable resources, recycling and re-usage of plastic. The company is a pioneer in the production of bio-based Polyethylene and EVA , resins made from sugarcane, and set an ambitious Circular Economy target in 2018: all plastic packaging manufactured with Braskem product is to be re-used, recycled or recovered by 2040. Braskem is committed to creating a sustainable production cycle, from raw materials to disposal.

Braskem CEO Fernando Musa highlighted the importance of the company's new strategy that reassures its commitment to sustainability while still growing and entering new markets . "We are presenting in Germany our newest breakthrough developments and establishing our circular portfolio, showing that we can deliver the best and most sustainable solutions to our clients".

Walmir Soller, Braskem's Vice-President of Olefins and Polyolefins for Europe and Asia, commented on the event's importance to the global industry. "K Fair is the world's largest event for plastics. Participating and launching new products, partnerships, projects, solutions, while also underscoring the importance of the Circular Economy, confirms Braskem's global footprint and capacity to serve clients around the world," he said.

Reducing CO2 footprint together with Kautex Maschinenbau

Recognizing the growing importance of Climate Change, Braskem is a solutions provider for CO2 reduction and climate change adaptation. Braskem says it has already reduced its intensity of greenhouse gases emissions by 21% since 2008. To strengthen its contribution even further, Braskem officially announced its partnership with Kautex Maschinenbau at K Fair. Braskem supplyed this new partner with a resin that is a blend of bio-based Plastic, made from sugarcane and a post-consumer resin (PCR), for the production of bottles made from three layers of high-density polyethylene (HDPE), including one consisting of foam. This new bottle product offers a complete circular solution that also reduces the CO2 footprint of finished products. Both companies have been working in partnership with Erema , a machine manufacturer for plastic recycling systems, who collected the bottles produced during K Fair and sent them for recycling. There was a session where the new bottle product was recycled live at Erema Circonomic Centre.

Moreover, selected products from Braskem's resin portfolio were showcased in the booth of leading machine suppliers at K Fair. For example, Braskem Flexus 3600 and PP RF70 ran on SML's machines; a new stretch film solution made of bio-based content shrink film was used by Carnevalli; Braskem Prisma 6810 ran by Gabler; I'm greenTM bio-based resins were utilized by Euro Machinery; and Maxio PG480 was the raw material on Windmöller & Hölscher's machines.

Edison Terra, Braskem's Vice-President of Olefins and Polyolefins Unit for South America, added: "The entire chain should pursue circular thinking: integrating production, use, disposal and recycling. We believe that K Fair was a great opportunity to shine a spotlight on our circular economy approach. It led to new partnerships with other committed companies, that incorporate circularity into new products, increasing efficiency and facilitating the recycling and reuse of plastic products."

Introducing a Digital Transformation

At the fair, Braskem also showcased its Digital transformation strategy, a journey lead by its newly created Digital Center. This center is the catalyst of change for transforming Braskem's core - through initiatives that use technologies such as drones, sensors and machine learning to capture operating efficiency gains and better cost-benefit overviews. The Digital Center is also incubating new business models through a series of new Ventures. Braskem's Digital strategy will help improve key processes, from product development to sales fulfillment, including Smart Factory (industry 4.0) and Advanced Planning.

One of the Digital Center's goal is to create a digital workplace in which employees can use and leverage cutting-edge technologies to promote new innovations. Braskem´s CEO Fernando Musa said that this digital transformation marks a major milestone in the company's history. "From advanced analysis to automation, artificial intelligence, and applications in Internet of Things, Braskem is taking advantage of the latest digital technologies and agile methodologies to significantly enhance its performance and eventually transform how we do business. That gives us a major competitive advantage, enabling us to generate new margin opportunities and to continue offering top quality service to our clients," said Musa.

Seeking opportunities to grow globally

Braskem highlighted at K Fair once again another key project for its growth. In 2017, the company announced an investment of US$ 675 million to construct its sixth polypropylene (PP) industrial unit in the United States. The project, called Delta, is being built in La Porte, Texas, and will be the largest and most energy efficient PP unit in North America, with a production capacity of 450,000 kilotons per year. The new plant reached nearly 2/3 of its construction progress at the end of the second quarter in 2019 and will start production during the first half of 2020.

Promised as one of the biggest deliveries at K Fair 2016, Braskem completed the construction of Braskem's Idesa Petrochemical Complex in Veracruz, Mexico. The US$ 5,2 billion project has increased the company's resins production by 1.05 million tons, reaching a total of 8.7 million tons of global production capacity.

Fernando Musa, Braskem's CEO, states: "In 2007 we presented here that we were developing Green Polyethylene, which we brought in 2010. In 2013 we said that we were building the Mexico complex, the most modern petrochemical plant in the Americas, and in 2016 that became a reality. And now I am announcing our new PP production line named Delta, will be completed and fully operational in 2020".

The latest products at K Fair

Braskem selected several new products to be showcased at K Fair 2019.

1. A tubular low-density polyethylene grade, developed to support the extrusion coating segment. According to Braskem, it offers superior stability and resistance for coating of several substrates including paper, cartonboard, aluminium and other polymers; aseptic, non-ascetical and raffia packaging applications.

2. Braskem's latest brand for healthcare products, Medcol, was introduced. Medcol is a new Braskem medical products portfolio for the healthcare industry.

3. A new PP grade called DP213A, the newest grade in the Maxio family, which features a low melt flow rate and anti-UV additive: Braskem says that the resin was developed especially to meet the demands of clients for raffia tapes and higher productivity in the extrusion phase. Its use enables companies in the big bag segment (used to transport grains, fertilizers, ore and chemicals) to increase production by 30% without any increase in energy consumption.

4. In the Caps and Closures segment, Braskem says that it offers the most complete portfolio of solutions in PE, PP, Renewables and PCR. Braskem displayed caps for carbonated soft drinks, still water, food and personal & home care applications.

5. Braskem also showcased its solutions for the agribusiness, civil construction, automotive, footwear and other industries, which include solutions such as Braskem Evance, Braskem Proxess and Braskem Rigeo Lumios.

Source: Braskem