Conference aimed at plastics in China’s auto market

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SHANGHAI (Feb. 22, 1 p.m. ET) — Though China’s previously white-hot economy has slowed some, and faces many challenges, the nation’s automotive market remains healthy. Year-end projections by consultants IHS Automotive and LMC Automotive forecast that China’s light-vehicle sales will rise 8-10 percent in 2012, up from about 3 percent growth last year. Sales last year totaled more than 18.5 million units, making China the world’s biggest auto market.

Additionally, China’s vehicle exports may rise about 50 percent this year, extending record shipments in 2011, according to the China Chamber of Commerce for the Import & Export of Machinery & Electronic Products. Total auto exports – driven by strong demand in developing markets such as Russia, Saudi Arabia and Brazil – increased at the same pace last year to just under 850,000 units.

With the Chinese government strongly encouraging the production of more fuel-efficient and environmentally friendly vehicles, as one means to fight the nation’s choking big-city pollution, opportunities abound for suppliers of plastics materials and auto components. This focus on vehicle lightweighting, as well as on electric and hybrid vehicle development, is the driving force for Plastics News to organize China Plastics in Automotive 2012, its second international business conference in China.

Following last year’s debut in Guangzhou, which attracted about 150 participants, the bilingual CPA 2012 will be held at Shanghai’s Kerry Hotel Pudong on April 17 – the day before the 100,000-person Chinaplas 2012 trade show opens in the adjoining exhibition complex.

With more than a dozen Chinese and Western presenters, the event targets plastics and automotive industry executives, as well as design, engineering, purchasing and marketing management. Speakers will look at vehicle design trends, and at the role plastics and advanced composites will play in interiors, seating, powertrain and under-the-hood components, as well as in electrification, battery and hybrid technology.

Speakers include officials from:

• Chinese automakers — Chang’an Automobile Group and Chery Automobile Co.;

• Multinational Tier One suppliers — Delphi Connector Systems, Faurecia SA, IAC Group and Johnson Controls Inc.;

• Major resin producers – DSM Engineering Plastics and DuPont Performance Polymers;

• Market consultants – Ipsos SA and Automotive Foresight (Shanghai) Co. Ltd;

• Leading Chinese auto parts suppliers – CAIP Group and Ningbo HuaXiang Automotive.

Attendees can save $100 off the conference price of $595 by registering by March 16, and also will receive a free pass to attend the April 18-21 Chinaplas show (www.chinaplasonline.com), which is now the world’s second-largest plastics exhibition. Group rates also are available.

See the complete program or register at www.pnchina.com/cpa2012.