Solvay unveils large-scale project to increase production capacity of sodium bicarbonate by 200,000 tons at its Devnya plant in Bulgaria; investment responds to growing global demand in industrial uses, animal feed and other applications

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June 16, 2022 (press release) –

The new facility located in Devnya won the 2021 Bulgarian Investment Agency’s "Investor in Enlargement" award. It meets the highest European environmental and technological standards and is certified as a Class A investment.

Solvay Sodi, a joint-venture between Solvay and Sisecam, unveiled the result of another large-scale investment project at the Devnya plant in Bulgaria. This growth project increases capacity for the production of sodium bicarbonate – a derivative of soda ash – at the plant by 200,000 tons. 

The new facility responds to the growing global demand for sodium bicarbonate, an essential product notably used for removing pollutants from the flue gas in industrial applications and as an additive in animal feed, among many other applications. With this investment, Devnya, which is already Europe’s largest soda ash plant, becomes the second largest sodium bicarbonate plant in Europe and one of the biggest in the world.  

The inauguration of the new unit is part of an event organized to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the privatization of Solvay Sodi. It was attended by high-level delegations of Solvay Sodi shareholders. These included representatives from the Belgian science company Solvay and Turkish industrial group Sisecam; Frédéric Meurice, Ambassador of the Kingdom of Belgium to Bulgaria; and representatives from government and state administration, local authorities, trade unions and company partners, as well as journalists and employees.

“I am particularly proud of this modern and energy-efficient facility, in which we have integrated all our know-how and the best technologies available,” said Spiros Nomikos, Solvay Sodi CEO. “This investment is consistent with all those made by Solvay Sodi over the past 25 years to make this site a global reference for the soda ash and sodium bicarbonate industry."

“With the support of the government and local communities, Solvay Sodi is determined to continue investing in Bulgaria in the future,” said Philippe Kehren, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Solvay Sodi and President of Solvay’s Soda Ash and Derivatives Global Business Unit.  “In order to reach our sustainability ambitions, we must continue the energy transition of the plant. We want to produce energy from local sustainable fuels instead of fossil fuels that used to be partly sourced in Russia, in order to cut greenhouse gas emissions and protect our competitiveness. This is a fight against climate change as well as for our economic survival. It will allow the Devnya plant to keep competing with non-european players operating with lesser regulations and thus lower production costs. We count on the continued support of all our stakeholders to make it happen."

Alongside this investment, Solvay Sodi is accelerating its energy transition to phase out coal by 2030 and to reach carbon neutrality by 2050. This started with the biomass cofiring project announced last February, which will be completed by October 2022, cutting 20% of CO₂ emissions related to energy production at the plant.

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Dan Rivard
Dan Rivard
- VP Market Development -

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