German specialty chemical company Lanxess AG is investing 25 million euros ($27.2 million) in improving efficiency at its integrated production complex for nylon and precursors for plastics in Antwerp, Belgium.
“Our integrated production complex in Lillo [Antwerp] is the backbone of our global business for high-tech plastics,” said Matthias Zachert, Lanxess chairman, in an April 25 statement.
According to Zachert, the trend toward lightweight construction makes the automotive industry a “major future market” for Lanxess.
“Therefore we are continuously strengthening the competitiveness of this site. In total, our company has invested more than 300 million euros ($326.6 million) in Lillo since 2004,” he added.
The announcement was made on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of caprolactam production at the site. Caprolactam is a key precursor for the production of Lanxess' plastics.
In addition to the auto industry, these plastics are also used in electrical and electronics applications.
The Antwerp plant currently has a capacity of 220,000 metric tons per year of caprolactam.
Lanxess has three production sites in the Antwerp docklands.
Caprolactam and nylon are produced in Lillo-Antwerp, glass fibers and rubber chemicals are manufactured in Kallo. Arlanxeo, a Lanxess-Saudi Aramco rubber JV, produces synthetic rubber in Zwijndrecht.