Turkish-Chinese cooperation aims for the top in soda ash production
Star- Kazan Soda Elektrik, a subsidiary of one of Turkey’s leading conglomerates, Ciner Group, and China Tianchen Engineering Corporation (TCC) have signed an agreement to build the world’s largest soda ash production complex in Ankara’s Kazan district. The projected amount of investment for the facility, slated to enter production in 2017 with an annual capacity of 2.7 million tons, will reach 1.35 billion.
Creating employment for 2,200 people, the Kazan plant will supplement Turkey’s biggest existing soda ash production site, Eti Soda, 74 percent owned by Ciner Group, to reach a combined production of 4.4 million tons from 2017 onwards. The Chinese side will provide the funding and engineering services for the project which will increase Turkey’s soda ash exports to USD 1.75 billion per year. The Chinese company TCC is actively working on another large scale project in Turkey with the state-owned pipeline operator BOTAS to build a natural gas depository under Lake Tuz in Central Anatolia.
Speaking of the trona mineral which soda ash in its natural form is mined from, Turkey’s Minister of Energy and Natural Resources, Taner Yildiz said that the country was holding the world’s second reserves. “Turkey has 1.1 billion tons of trona reserves”, the minister remarked at the signing ceremony.
Soda ash has a wide range of use in several industries, mainly in glass production and chemicals.