South Korea’s major chemical firm Lotte Chemical [011170:KS] plans to invest KRW10tr (USD7.9bn) into new businesses in battery materials and hydrogen energy by 2030, as reported by Nikkei Asia on May 20. Specifically, the company will allocate KRW4tr (USD3.2bn) to the battery material businesses and KRW6tr (USD4.7bn) to the hydrogen businesses, such as hydrogen manufacturing based on the company’s existing petrochemical production facilities, hydrogen fueling stations, and hydrogen power generation. Notably, the company released the plan after it had reported KRW50tr (USD39.6bn) in revenue for 2021, skyrocketing 180% YoY.
Lotte Chemical sees hydrogen and battery businesses as its new growth points as these industries are booming with the spread of electric and fuel cell vehicles. The company also looks to cut its business’s reliance on petrochemicals through this investment. Lotte Chemical aims to build up an annual hydrogen production capacity of 600,000 tons by 2030 and take up 30% of South Korea’s hydrogen market. By now, it has unveiled plans to form a hydrogen business value chain across the country in 1Q22. Meanwhile, the company has also inked partnerships with global energy enterprise Air Liquide [AI:FP] and local liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) producer SK GAS [018670:KS] to establish a nationwide hydrogen fueling station network by 2023 and hydrogen fuel-cell plants by 2024. Lotte Chemical, along with another three chemical subsidiaries of Lotte Group [004990:KS], have all agreed on a proposal to realize carbon-neutral growth by 2030. The four subsidiaries aim for KRW6tr (USD5.4bn) of accumulated revenue from eco-friendly products by 2030, and their parent company will shell out KRW5.2tr (USD4.1bn) for the target.