Sector News

Port of Antwerp launches search for investors in circular economy hub focused on chemicals sector

October 5, 2020
Chemical Value Chain

A potential circular economy hub aimed specifically at the chemical and manufacturing industries is being studied by Port of Antwerp, Belgium.

The proposed site, named NextGen District, covers 88 hectares. Port of Antwerp says it is launching a consultation phase to find investors “within the circular processing and manufacturing industry who intend to further develop the site in order to contribute to the transition to a climate-neutral society.” The port says the consultation “specifically concerns candidates with core activities within the circular processing industry [primarily chemical processes] and the manufacturing industry.”

The area was formerly used by General Motors, with the port authority describing it as one of the last remaining available large sites in the port close to Europe’s largest chemical cluster. The industrial site is planned to be where end-of-life products will be reused, circular carbon solutions researched, and experiments conducted with renewable energy, it says. Room will also be allocated for relevant startups and “free-standing plots of various sizes aimed at chemical and industrial players.”

Efforts will be made to reduce carbon dioxide emissions and transition to alternative energy sources through projects such as generating renewable energy; using residual heat; and importing, storing, and converting hydrogen into building blocks for the chemical sector, it says.

“Port of Antwerp is home to the largest integrated cluster in Europe. We intend to strengthen, anchor, and support this cluster in the transition to a carbon-neutral and circular economy,” says Jacques Vandermeiren, the port’s CEO. “The energy transition and the circular economy were at the top of the agenda before the pandemic, and still are today,” he says.

By: Mark Thomas

Source: Chemical Week

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