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|Ahlstrom to make reinforcements in China|
Nonwovens leader Ahlstrom Corporation is to begin manufacturing glass fibre reinforcements for composites to be empoyed in the wind energy market in China at its Binzhou plant, in the Shandong province on China’s eastern coast.
Ahlstrom will install multiaxial machines to its existing Binzhou site, which currently manufactures transportation filtration materials and employs 170 people, with the new production scheduled for start-up in the fourth quarter of this year.
“China has become a global power house in wind energy and through this investment we can better serve our global and local customers in the country,” says Laura Raitio, Ahlstrom’s executive vice president for building and energy. “This gives us a good platform for further growth in the fast growing wind energy markets in China and elsewhere in Asia.
It is predicted that the wind energy market will grow at an annual rate of approximately 15 percent in China in the next five years.
In 2010, Ahlstrom’s total net sales grew by almost 50% in the Asia Pacific-region and the company made an acquisition of a filtration plant and announced a joint venture in China for the production of masking tape substrates and medical papers. In addition, the company announced an investment to wallcover materials manufacturing in China this month.
Ahlstrom’s Building and Energy business currently serves the European, North American and Asian wind energy markets from its plants in Mikkeli, Finland and Bishopville, South Carolina, USA.