LEVERKUSEN, Germany (June 29, 2009)—Rubber and chemicals supplier Lanxess A.G. has pushed back a planned butyl rubber facility for Singapore for the second time because of reduced global demand.
Production at the site now is scheduled to begin in 2014. Originally the plant was to come on-stream in 2011, but in December the company moved the date to 2012.
The capacity and the layout of the facility are expected to remain the same, said Ron Commander, global head of the Lanxess' Butyl Rubber business unit. The factory, to be constructed at a cost of about $560 million, is expected to produce about 100,000 metric tons of butyl per year.
However, Lanxess plans on using the extra time to work on new technology for butyl rubber production at the plant that will lower manufacturing costs, make the site more efficient and address environmental issues, Commander said. The company did not divulge details about the technology.
In separate news from the plant postponement, Lanxess is in negotiations with Singapore Economic Development Board to move the company's butyl rubber unit's headquarters there, perhaps as early as 2010. More than 40 percent of Lanxess' butyl demand is coming from the Asian region, Commander said, and the number is growing.
Lanxess employs about 100 people in Singapore. The current butyl rubber segment headquarters is in Switzerland.