Expansion and maintenance of plants around the world
Billions to expand production
China holds many records. The country is, for example, the world’s largest automotive and construction market – industries which are among the most important customers of Bayer MaterialScience. It is understandable, then, that the company is significantly expanding production there. However, major investment projects are also underway at many other sites around the world.
Evening view: A tank farm for the storage of chemicals in Shanghai.
The Shanghai Chemical Industry Park was a swamp at the turn of the century. Today, it is a gigantic industrial area south of the Chinese metropolis and home to numerous production plants. And even more will be added over the next few years. Bayer MaterialScience, already the largest foreign investor there, is investing around 1 billion euros in increased production capacity during the coming years.
New construction and expansion of existing plants is scheduled to more than double capacities for the production of raw materials for rigid polyurethane foam (MDI) alone to one million metric tons per year. The material is used primarily as an insulating material for buildings and refrigeration appliances.
Close to the booming market
Particularly important for the automotive industry is the high-performance plastic polycarbonate, another of Bayer MaterialScience’s main products. Capacity here is scheduled to be increased from 200,000 to 500,000 metric tons per year. To be even closer to the booming market in Asia, the headquarters of this business unit has been relocated from Leverkusen in Germany to Shanghai.
At the Dormagen site in Germany, the company plans to increase the production capacity for TDI, a starting material for flexible polyurethane foam, to 300,000 metric tons per year. And in Brunsbüttel on the German North Sea coast, plans call for an increase in MDI capacity to 420,000 tons per year.
Significant projects are also either under way or in planning at the Baytown site in the United States. These include optimizations in TDI production and the upgrading and expansion of an MDI plant. These are joined by investment projects in such places as Antwerp, Belgium, Tarragona, Spain, and Map Ta Phut in Thailand.
In addition, the worldwide network of systems houses and innovation centers in close proximity to our customers is being steadily improved. And funds are constantly flowing into process and product innovations, as well as into the optimization and maintenance of buildings, infrastructure and logistics.