Bayer are planning to invest US$3.4 billion in the People’s Republic of China by 2008. The majority will spent on an integrated production complex at Caojing, near Shanghai, which alone will require capital spending of US$3.1 billion.

The construction of the complex officially started at the beginning of November during a visit to China by the German Chancellor in conjunction with the dedication of Bayer’s new polymer research centre in Pudong.

Bayer have also signed an agreement with the Shanghai Chemical Industry Park Company concerning the planned chemical and polymer production facilities in Caojing.

In the chemical park at Caojing, about 30 miles south of downtown Shanghai, Bayer plan to erect a network of world-scale plants to manufacture coating raw materials, thermoplastics, polyurethane raw materials and basic chemicals – products that have a variety of uses.

Bayer management board chairman Dr Manfred Schneider said: ‘Developing the new site at Caojing is a major step towards realising our expansion plans in the Asia-Pacific region and provides a clear signal of our confidence in the growth prospects for the Chinese economy. With this project, the People’s Republic clearly develops into a major focus of Bayer’s international investment plans.’

He added that the company plan to at least double their sales volume in the Greater China region by 2005. In 2000, Bayer posted sales of about US$1 billion in the People’s Republic of China, Hong Kong and Taiwan, making the region Bayer’s second largest market in Asia-Pacific after Japan.