Siam Cement subsidiary expands in Vietnam

Siam Cement subsidiary expands in Vietnam
Published: 03 February 2004

Siam Refractory Industry Co, a maker of bricks and heat resistant castibles, and a subsidiary of Siam Cement Group, is planning a two-billion-baht venture in Vietnam, according to managing director Somyod Tangmeelarp.  The venture was planned to capitalise on rising demand for refractory materials in Vietnam where many new factories require products and materials able to withstand extremely high temperatures.  Vietnam was chosen as the location for the production site due to its close proximity to China, one major source for raw materials.  The company decided against building a factory in China because many European and American investors are already operating similar plants there.  Details of the ownership split for the 100,000tpa venture were still undecided and are expected to take shape in 2006.

The company’s plant at Ban Mo, Saraburi, is expected to produce refractory materials at 120,000tpa, or 80 percent of installed capacity this year. Full capacity may be reached in 2005 with the construction of new facilities.  Next year, about 10 million baht will be spent to raise the plant’s capacity to 160,000tpa, along with plans for efficiency improvements.  Sales were worth US$45m (1.75 billion baht) this year, compared with US$42m last year.  About 70 per cent of total sales were for export, with the domestic market accounting for the rest.