Cologne, Germany-based specialty chemical company Lanxess has opened a second manufacturing plant on Jurong Island, Singapore, with an investment of EUR 200 million (USD 225 million).
“Together with our adjacent butyl rubber plant, the opening of this new butadiene rubber plant reinforces the strategic role of Singapore as our hub for synthetic rubber production for the Asian markets,” said Lanxess Chairman Matthias Zachert.
With a production capacity of 140,000 metric tonnes a year, the plant will produce neodymium butadiene rubber, which is mainly used in the threads and sidewalls of green tyres for reducing the rolling resistance of tyres and increasing their fuel efficiency.
The new plant will serve global markets, with an emphasis on the Asian region which now accounts for about a quarter of Lanxess’ sales.
Singapore’s Minister for Trade and Industry Lim Hng Kiang, who graced the opening ceremony, said that Singapore plays a significant role for companies who want to take advantage of the growth opportunities in the region.
“Riding on this growth, Singapore can play a significant role for companies looking to tap on opportunities in this region – by becoming a strategic base from which companies manage their Asian operations,” said Lim.
Despite today’s global economic uncertainty, chemical sales in Asia are expected to post a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of four to five percent over the next 10 years, he added.