ICL Group (Israel Chemicals Ltd.) and Duc Giang, a privately owned Vietnamese company, have signed a memorandum of understanding calling for cooperation in building and expanding a phosphate platform in Vietnam to serve the country and the wider Southeast Asian market. The agreement calls for joint activities to mine phosphate and establish factories to process phosphate in Bao Thang province, Vietnam, for a variety of uses in ICL’s three core markets: food, agriculture and engineered materials.

The companies also will study the possibility of future cooperation that would enable ICL to increase and diversify its mining sources outside of Israel, broaden its global activities in the phosphate sector, and provide it with a growth engine for the primary markets in which it operates. 

The Vietnam operations are not intended to replace ICL’s activities in Israel but are expected to strengthen its overall franchise in the phosphate markets globally, especially in Asia. The new joint company may also supply several ICL customers and plants currently served by the company’s Israeli operations in the Negev, should activities there cease due to the expiration of mining permits several years from now.

Going forward, the two companies are engaging in joint activities to evaluate the expansion of phosphate mining in Vietnam, including the manufacture of downstream products based on phosphates. 

Duc Giang is a manufacturer of thermal acid (P4) and is in the process of expanding its activities in this area by, among other things, engaging in a project to broaden its fertilizer activities and produce phosphoric acid for the fertilizers and food industries. 

The two companies believe that cooperation between them will assist in the development of local industry in Vietnam, in general, and the nation’s phosphate industry, in particular.