New Covestro factory put into operation at Shanghai industry park
Covestro has announced it has put into operation a new factory at its integrated site in Shanghai's chemical industry park, amid its latest efforts to reinforce the local supply chain and solutions.
With investment in the double-digit million euro range, the facility is the 12th factory at the site, the German company's single largest production site worldwide, and adds a new product pipeline to its locally produced materials.
The new production line will support growing demand for high performing elastic materials in the China and Asia Pacific market in segments such as offshore cable protection and silicon wafer cutting rollers for photovoltaic panels.
"We're very pleased that we made the right decision at the right time to build this plant and located it in the integrated site with easier access to raw materials to support further growth," head of the business entity elastomers at Covestro, Thomas Braig, said in an interview in Shanghai.
He also noted that the current capacity of the production line has been designed to serve industries with high growth potential and can also be easily upgraded in the future, while fully leveraging the integrated site's economies of scale.
The company also expects the growth rate of polyurethane elastomers to outperform China's overall GDP growth with wider adoption of renewable energy.
Advanced materials is a pillar industry and a crucial area for Shanghai to continuously enhance science and innovation capability to strengthen its high-end industry.
The Shanghai Economic and Informatization Commission has mapped out a blueprint for overall industry size for new materials to reach 300 billion yuan (US$41.7 billion) by the end of 2023.
Construction on Covestro's new factory took more than one year and the plant went into operation as scheduled, and the company said it stays confident in Shanghai and China's business environment.
"The China market is still worthy of investment and commitment under the challenging and complex global market environment and we stay firmly dedicated to investment in one of our most important markets," said president of Covestro China Holly Lei.
In the first half of this year, the city strengthened its leading position and remained a favored investment destination for foreign investors.
According to the Shanghai Statistic Bureau, 2,541 new foreign-invested enterprises were set up in Shanghai in the first half of 2023, and the use of foreign capital also climbed 7.1 percent to US$12.78.
There were a total of 922 regional headquarters of multinational corporations in the city and 544 foreign-funded research and development centers at the end of June.