Mumbai, India - BASF has announced several investments in its automotive operations in India, including a new Refinish Color Lab for BASF Coatings at Mangalore, commissioned in February 2008.
The group is also expanding its e-coat facility, which is expected to be completed by end of 2008. Also underway is the expansion of BASF's catalyst plant in Chennai. The plant will triple its capacity by 2009, as announced in August 2007, said BASF, in a 7 May announcement.
BASF will also build an engineering plastics compounding plant at its site in Thane, expected on stream by the second half of 2009. Thane also has a computer aided engineering (CAE) lab, where engineers design and optimise new engineering plastic parts in close cooperation with customers.
"Automotive is one of BASF's most important target industry segments and our second-largest source of sales after the chemical industry," said Dr Wolfgang Hapke, President Market & Business Development Asia Pacific, in the company statement. "In 2007, BASF derived over 13 percent of its total global sales of €58 000 million from sales to the automotive industry."
"Production figures show that Asia is the fastest growing region in the global automotive industry, with car production increasing by 8 percent last year; in India it has been growing at an average of 15 percent per year over the last few years. Innovations in the automotive industry are increasingly being driven by Asian companies, and BASF supports this trend," commented Prasad Chandran, chairman BASF Group in India and head South Asia, in the statement.