The investment, slated for completion by 2012, will see Bayer Material Science (Leverkusen, Germany) build five new facilities in China to serve what it called "the booming manufacturing sector in the country." The facilities comprise three polyurethanes (PUR) systems houses, a new polycarbonate (PC) sheet facility and a polycarbonate color compounding and design center. The three new PUR systems houses are to be built in Shanghai, Qingdao and Chongqing, the new color compounding and design center in Chongqing, and the sheet facility is planned in Guangzhou.
China has become Bayer MaterialScience's second largest market worldwide. The company already has a color competence and development center and a polyurethanes systems house in Guangzhou and another PUR systems house in Nanjing. Peter Vanacker, director of the company's global PUR business, explained the site selection: "Many of our customers are opening facilities in the northern and central parts of the country (and) have asked that we continue to support them with customized solutions in these growing industrial regions. We believe it makes good business and economic sense to invest close to them."
More than 40% of the supplier's PUR sales in China are from supplying PUR systems to the construction, appliance and automotive sectors. Systems houses provide design and engineering support, as well as PUR processing, to companies, especially OEMs that do not do their own processing of the material.
According to the company, which also is one of the world's largest suppliers of polycarbonate with its Makrolon-brand products, as well as a leading supplier of PC sheet, Asia-Pacific already accounts for more than 60% of the world's polycarbonate production, with that figure expected to rise to 65% by 2015. China accounts for the majority of this demand.