Dow seeks further opportunities in China
Dow is looking to extend its efforts in research and development in China, its second-largest market worldwide, as the materials science giant sees increasing demand for high-value-added materials.
"Sustainability for us will drive more than 80 percent of innovation in China," Jon Penrice, president of Dow Asia Pacific, told reporters in an online interview.
The innovations would mainly be from three areas — safer materials such as products with lower VOC (volatile organic compounds), products around climate change such as materials used for new-energy vehicles, and circular economy, particularly for plastic recycling.
"A big area driving a lot of innovation in the next 50 years is the area of sustainability," he said.
In the market since 1979, the company has a business and innovation center in Shanghai, its largest integrated research and development center outside the US, set up in 2009.
With more than 400 scientists at the center, it has developed many products presented at this year's import expo.
On display are material application in fields of 5G networks, PPE, transport solutions and environmentally friendly consumer product solutions.
The expo also saw the company's global debut of a high-purity oxygenated solvent that can be used to make high-precision semiconductor chips.
Penrice shared the company's observations of urbanization, consumerism and sustainable development in China, adding that as a result "materials science required to be successful in China have become much more sophisticated," enlarging the market's demand for high value-added materials.
Attending the import fair for the third consecutive year, Dow said it had made 50 to 60 new customer contacts in the past few days. Penrice said it values such contacts, especially those from different industries, that can spur innovation opportunities.
"The great thing about the CIIE is that you can have collaboration across many industries, and those from different parts of the value chain, very different from specialized fairs we have attended," he said.
"The ultimate goal is to bring innovation in an area where nobody had thought of collaborating before."
Dow has confirmed to take part in the next import expo as well.