The People’s Republic of China (PRC) is set to receive a massive cash injection from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) for reducing its use of mercury in the chemical industry. The ADB has officially approved a $100 million loan as part of an energy consumption initiative for China. The funding will move through the China Construction Bank via the China National Chemical Corporation to all of the plants in the group. The Chinese government is placing a high priority on the reduction of toxic substances (both coal and mercury in the chemical industry). The objective is to reduce all manner of greenhouse gases and toxic emissions.
China has been plagued by a lack of technological prowess and innovation in dealing with the challenges associated with transitioning to Eco-friendly production. The financial aspect is also a concern for China, in terms of the adoption of safer, cleaner and new processes. As a case in point, some 80% of China’s PVC industry makes use of coal in its chemical processes. The catalyst in the process is mercury, and China is responsible for the use of some 50% of mercury usage worldwide. The PRC will attempt to use a catalyst free of mercury on a mass scale at the chemical plants located in the Shandong Province. The initiative is expected to reduce mercury usage by an estimated 35 tonnes by 2019.
Additional co-funding is being offered by the China Construction Bank in the amount of $81 million. The Group will provide additional support valued at $63 million – this will come in the form of equity stakes from the Group’s borrowing companies.