Kobe Steel is planning to establish a company in the Xiqing Economic-Technological Development Area in Tianjin, China to produce aluminium sheet for automotive body panels. This decision was made at the board of directors meeting held earlier today.
The new company will be the first Japanese operation to produce aluminium sheet for body panels in China. Kobe Steel will supply master coils from its Moka Plant in Tochigi Prefecture, Japan. The aluminium will then undergo annealing followed by surface treatment and other finishing processes by the new company.
The new company, Kobelco Automotive Aluminium Rolled Products (China), will be established in early 2014. It will have a production capacity of 100,000t per year. The wholly owned subsidiary of Kobe Steel will be capitalised at CNY 450M (about USD 74M). Total investment is anticipated to reach CNY 1.15B (about USD 190M). The facility is expected to start up in 2016 and will employ about 140 people when it goes into full operation.