|제목||[No. 223 Social News] Lack of Urea Solution, a big blow to South Korea|
Lack of Urea Solution, a big blow to South Korea
Cheongdae Times Senior Reporter of International Affairs Seong-won Kim
The shortage of Urea Solution, which began in mid-October, continues to hurt South Korea. Then let’s find out what the Urea Solution is, what it is used for, and what problems will occur if the supply of Urea Solution is insufficient.
Urea Solution is an organic compound based on ammonia and is a general-purpose chemical material used in various ways for agricultural and industrial use. Most of this material is used in diesel trucks, diesel cars and should be injected every time you travel 300 to 400 km.
Otherwise, Nitrogen Oxide, a carcinogen that comes out when burned in diesel, can’t be converted into Nitrogen and water, causing problems. Therefore, Urea Solution is an essential material for diesel cars. This material has been considered a common and easy to get material because there was no shortage in supply. However, a problem arose when China restricted exports of these materials.
The shortage of Urea Solution supply occurred because of China’s restriction on Urea exports. Urea is a material that China has produced from their coal steadily since the early 2010s. However, from the second half of 2021, as the Chinese government lacked coal in their country due to trade disputes.
About 60% of all cars in South Korea are diesel cars, which is damaged. If Urea Solution is not put in, it can’t be started or output properly. Then essential industry vehicles such as police, and firefighting are on the verge of stopping.
In addition, more than half of the 50 domestic Urea Solution production plants were shut down because of the shortage of Urea Solution. Lotte Chemical, which accounts for 50% of South Korea’s Urea Solution market, is also on the verge of a shutdown.
As the supply of Urea Solution became uncertain, many truck drivers across the country hoarded Urea Solution in advance. Thus, making it difficult to purchase and raising the price of Urea Solution by 50%.
The Korean government did not take appropriate measures, and offered a complacent response. Even though they recognized that there could be problems with the supply of Urea immediately after China restricted the export of Urea.
An anonymous government officer is drawing public resentment, saying, “In the first place, we did not properly grasp the seriousness of the situation, such as thinking that the controversy over the number of Urea would be simply a problem related to fertilizer.”
Realizing the seriousness of the shortage of Urea Solution supply too late, the government has come up with measures such as starting consultations with Chinese customs.
Taking this experience, the government has to make efforts to prevent the crisis in advance by collecting and analyzing sufficient information in advance so that the country does not face a crisis due to the government’s complacent response. This is the government’s natural duty and it’s the desire of the public.