ARNHEM, Netherlands - Akzo Nobel announced Thursday that it plans to invest approximately $340 million to build two new chemicals plants in China, within the Ningbo Chemical Industry Zone (NCIZ), for manufacturing ethylene amines and chelating agents.
The plants will be the first to be constructed on a 123 acre multi-site that Akzo Nobel reserved in October 2006. The site will be one of the largest for the company’s global activities.
Construction will commence as soon as the appropriate approvals have been received from Chinese authorities.
According to Leif Darner, the Akzo Nobel Board member responsible for Chemicals, “China is an extremely important market for us and we are having to respond to growing demand for our products. We plan to make further investments in grassroots chemical production facilities in Ningbo at the appropriate time.”
Both plants, which will create several hundred new jobs, will utilize state-of-the-art technology and will be built to meet high, self-imposed standards for eco-efficiency.
The chelating agents plant is expected to begin production in 2009, followed by the ethylene amines factory in early 2010.
Currently, Akzo Nobel operates two production sites in Ningbo, for polymer chemicals and powder coatings, and a coatings facility in Suzhou, near Shanghai.
Ethylene amines are intermediates used in industrial applications such as agriculture, textiles, pharmaceuticals, plastics, cosmetics and detergents. Chelating agents are used as intermediates or end products in applications such as micronutrients and food and beverage preservatives, and for photo and film processing, the bleaching of pulp, and the manufacture of soaps and detergents.