First core unit of the large-scale project in Shanghai begins producing PLEXIGLAS® molding compounds
One of Evonik Industries’ largest investment projects worldwide, amounting to €250 million, is taking shape. Just one year after the cornerstone was laid, production of molding compounds from polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) for the Chinese and other Asian markets commenced in Shanghai on November 12 of this year. Known as PLEXIGLAS®, these PMMA compounds also enjoy immense popularity around the world. The new Shanghai plant is an important unit of an integrated production facility for methacrylates. With this plant, Evonik is strengthening its good market position in Asia.
The new production capacity for PMMA is based in the Shanghai Chemical Industry Park (SCIP), where the first subplant of Evonik’s MATCH (“Methacrylates To China”) Project has gone on stream after receiving all of the permits from the Chinese authorities. MATCH stands for a new integrated production system for methacrylates and PMMA specialties.
The entire world-scale complex comprises units for producing methacrylic acid, butyl methacrylate, and special methacrylates in addition to an annual capacity of some 100,000 metric tons of methyl methacrylate (MMA). According to plan, work on the remaining sections of the complex is under progress. The aim is thus to have a new integrated facility, currently unique the world over, for supplying customers in different business sectors—from opto-electronics to the adhesives industry.
“Asia’s demand accounts for more than half of the world's production of PMMA. Located in the heart of the largest market with continually increasing growth rates, Evonik is strengthening its position as one of the leading global suppliers of PMMA molding compounds with its new plant. By producing in Shanghai, we’re setting our stakes on high-quality products for future-oriented markets and applications,” said Dr. Klaus Engel, member of Evonik Industries AG’s Executive Board and responsible for the Group’s Chemicals Business Area.
PLEXIGLAS® molding compounds are distinguished by their outstanding brilliance and high level of transparency, their exceptionally high weather resistance, and color stability, as well as excellent surface hardness. Opto-electronics and display technology, not to mention the automotive and lighting industries, are its most important target markets.
Evonik is becoming the largest supplier of specialty polymers, thanks to its Performance Polymers Business Unit in China. The startup of integrated production of PMMA specialties has contributed to this, as has the Research and Development (R&D) Center in Shanghai. On an area covering 25,000 square meters, it is home to cutting-edge laboratories for research, development, application technology, and technical customer service, as well as a test facility for polymer technology.
As the next subunit, it will begin producing specialty monomers this year. Additional sections of the integrated facility, such as the production plant for thermoplastic methacrylate resins and methyl methacrylate (MMA), will begin operating in 2009.
The Performance Polymers Business Unit of Evonik Industries is a worldwide manufacturer of PMMA products sold under the PLEXIGLAS® trademark on the European, Asian, African and Australian continents and under the trademark ACRYLITE® in the Americas.
Evonik Industries is the creative industrial group from Germany which operates in three business areas: Chemicals, Energy and Real Estate. Evonik is a global leader in specialty chemicals, an expert in power generation from hard coal and renewable energies, and one of the largest private residential real estate companies in Germany. Our strengths are creativity, specialization, continuous self-renewal, and reliability. Evonik is active in over 100 countries around the world. In its fiscal year 2007 about 43,000 employees generated sales of about €14.4 billion and an operating profit (EBITDA) of more than €2.2 billion.
In so far as forecasts or expectations are expressed in this press release or where our statements concern the future, these forecasts, expectations or statements may involve known or unknown risks and uncertainties. Actual results or developments may vary, depending on changes in the operating environment. Neither Evonik Industries AG nor its group companies assume an obligation to update the forecasts, expectations or statements contained in this release.