Euronext: LG, NYSE: LR
Lafarge announces today that Lafarge Boral Gypsum in Asia (LBGA), its plasterboard joint-venture with Boral, will double its plasterboard manufacturing capacity in China.
Two new plants will be constructed – as government approvals have been received -one in Shanghai and one in Chongqing which will complement LBGA's existing manufacturing facilities in both cities. The Chongqing plant is expected to be operational in the third quarter of 2005 and the Shanghai plant in the first quarter of 2006.
With a total investment of approximately US $30 million Lafarge Boral Gypsum in Asia will double its production capacity from around 35 million square metres of plasterboard per annum to more than 70 million square metres to keep up with a sustained market growth in China of more than 15% p.a. in the last 5 years.
Isidoro Miranda, Executive Vice President of Lafarge Group, and Chairman of the Board of LBGA, said:
"This new development in China is an important step in our Asian plasterboard joint venture's growth strategy. These new plants, in the high growth markets of Shanghai and Chongqing, will allow us to build on our leadership position in Eastern China, as well as to increase our penetration of the fast developing markets of Central China. Our modern and high quality plasterboard solutions, respectful of the environment, are essential to our long term growth. Furthermore we expect this investment to create value rapidly.”
Notes to Editors:
1. Lafarge Gypsum first started its activities in Shanghai in 1996. Lafarge Boral Gypsum in Asia (LBGA) is a 50/50 plasterboard joint venture between the Australian based building materials Boral Australia Ltd and the French based Lafarge Group. Since its establishment in June 2000, LBGA has grown its position as the largest producer and supplier of gypsum plasterboard and related products in Asia (excluding Japan). LBGA operates in China, Korea, Indonesia, Thailand and Malaysia, exporting to many countries in the Asia Pacific region.
2. Lafarge Group has about 2400 employees in China, where it started its activities in 1994 through a JV in cement. All four of the Group's Divisions are present in the country.
Lafarge, the world leader in building materials, holds top-ranking positions in all four of its Divisions: Cement, Aggregates & Concrete, Roofing and Gypsum. Lafarge employs 75,000 people in 75 countries. In 2004, the Group posted sales of €14.4 billion.
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