June 26, 2022

As South Korea continues to face urea or urea solution shortage, several top firms in the country are found trying to secure the same through their global networks with foreign partners. Such a move comes to alleviate the domestic shortage of an additive critical for diesel cars.

According to figures gathered by The Korea Herald, the corporate firms in the country have been able to secure some 64 million liters of urea solution so far.

The amount accounts for more than two-thirds of some 82 million liters of urea solution the government said would be imported through the beginning of next year.

According to the country’s biggest urea solution manufacturer, Lotte Fine Chemical, it has signed deals with companies in Vietnam, Saudi Arabia, Japan, Russia and Indonesia to secure a total of 12,000 metric tons of urea, required to make urea solution.

The chemical company mentioned that it will produce 58 million liters of urea solution at its factory, with the additional 6,500 tons of urea which had passed inspections for export in China. And also some 700 tons that the government was able to secure through a crackdown on hoarding.

The amount that will be produced will be equivalent to at least a two-month stockpile for the country.

Another company, a general trading arm of LX Holdings, LX International is reported to have been able to secure 2.7 million liters of urea solution and 1,100 tons of urea since last week. It secured so by signing deals with firms in China, Vietnam, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand.

The country’s steel giant POSCO’s trading unit, Posco International has announced itself to secure 180,000 liters of urea solution through new deals signed in Australia and Mexico.

The company mentioned that it will take between two weeks to two months for the supplies to arrive in the country.

South Korea has been under a supply crunch of urea and urea solution after China stregthened its inspection criteria for fertilizers including urea in mid-October, by citing a power shortage due to lack of coal.

According to Korea Customs Service data, this year, from January to September alone, the country imported 97.6 percent urea for diesel exhaust fluid from China.