(LEAD) Ship carrying Chinese urea arrives in S. Korea

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(ATTN: UPDATES with arrival of container ship in paras 2-3, CHANGES headline, lead)
SEOUL, Nov. 23 (Yonhap) — The first batch of urea that has been under export inspection in China was delivered to South Korea on Tuesday, which is expected to ease a supply crunch of the material needed to make an essential fluid for diesel vehicles.
A container ship carrying 300 tons of urea arrived in the southeastern port of Ulsan around 9 p.m. after leaving the Chinese eastern city of Tianjin on Saturday, the Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries said
The shipment is imported by Lotte Fine Chemical Co., the country’s biggest producer of urea solution, the ministry said.
South Korea is grappling with the supply shortage of urea solution, as China imposed export curbs on urea to ease domestic supply bottlenecks in October.
Beijing has decided to export the 18,700 tons of urea for which Korean firms had already signed contracts with Chinese exporters.
South Korea said 97.6 percent of its urea imports came from China in the first nine months of this year, up from 88 percent in 2020, underscoring its heavy reliance on the resource-rich neighbor for the key material.

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