Bayer invests in China

In addition, Bayer wants to increase its capacities in Shanghai for raw materials for the production of polyurethane rigid foam, which is used, for example, to save energy throughout the cool chain as an insulant. To this end, it plans to build a new MDI plant with an annual production capacity of 500,000 tonnes. At the same time, the company also intends to expand the capacity of its present MDI production facility from 350,000 to 500,000 t/y.

A further part of this investment package is the expansion of HDI production. HDI is an important starting product for high-quality surface coatings. There are plans to expand the capacity of the existing HDI production to meet short term market demand. The construction of a further 50,000-tonnes/year HDI production facility is also planned.

Only recently, Bayer MaterialScience announced the construction of five customer support facilities in Shanghai and three other Chinese cities. They will focus on customized production and further processing. The company has earmarked a further EUR 110 million for this project.

With the expansion of its research and development center for polymers in Shanghai, Bayer MaterialScience intends to strengthen its capability as a provider of innovative solutions. It plans to concentrate on areas in which China plays a leading global role, such as wind turbines and solar energy plants. The other research and development facilities in Europe and the United States will continue to be dedicated to further promising areas of research and to be part of the company’s global R&D network.

Furthermore, Shanghai will become the new headquarters of the global polycarbonate activities of Bayer MaterialScience. The management team headed by Dr. Günter Hilken will move there from Leverkusen. The relocation is scheduled to begin next year. By moving closer to its customers, Bayer MaterialScience is taking account of the importance of the region for the global polycarbonates market. The company expects this step to speed up decision-making processes and to achieve more efficiency generally in day-to-day work processes.

With 2009 sales of EUR 7.5 billion, Bayer MaterialScience is among the world’s largest polymer companies. Business activities are focused on the manufacture of high-tech polymer materials and the development of innovative solutions for products used in many areas of daily life. The main segments served are the automotive, electrical and electronics, construction and the sports and leisure industries. At the end of 2009, Bayer MaterialScience had 30 production sites and employed approximately 14,300 people around the globe. Bayer MaterialScience is a Bayer Group company.