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Wacker to expand VAE production in Nanjing

| By Mary Bailey

Wacker Chemie AG (Munich, Germany) is expanding its Chinese polymer activities by investing around $100 million in building two new production plants at its Nanjing site. The Nanjing site is expanding by adding a reactor for vinyl-acetate-ethylene copolymer (VAE) dispersions and a spray dryer for VAE dispersible polymer powders. The new plants’ construction is set to start as soon as the local authorities have issued the final permits. The reactor and spray dryer are scheduled to come on stream in the second half of 2022. The two plants, when completed, will be the largest of their kind in the world.


Wacker’s Nanjing site manufactures dispersions and dispersible polymer powders as binders for construction applications and for coatings and adhesives (photo: Wacker Chemie AG)

Wacker’s Nanjing expansion will more than double its production capacity there, enabling it to meet growing customer demand for its high-quality binders, particularly from China’s buoyant construction industry. “China is the largest building market in the world, accounting for 20 percent of all construction investment. Our capacity expansion in Nanjing strengthens our position as the global leader for vinyl acetate-ethylene dispersions and polymer powders,” notes Rudolf Staudigl, CEO of Wacker Chemie AG, as he explains the reasons for the investment.

“Our binders not only enhance the properties of building materials, but also make construction activities more resource-efficient,” adds Paul Lindblad, President of WACKER Greater China. “Ongoing urbanization and the need to renovate existing residential buildings continue to drive the development of environmentally-friendly dry-mix building materials in China. Nanjing’s expanded capacities will enable us to securely meet future market growth in the region.”

Dispersions and dispersible polymer powders from Wacker are used in such sectors as construction, paints, coatings and adhesives – for example, for formulating high-quality tile adhesives, energy-saving external thermal insulation composite systems, and low-odor low-emission interior paints. They also find application in paper coating and in carpets and textiles.

At its fully integrated production site in the Nanjing Jiangbei New Material High-Tech Park, Wacker manufactures VAE dispersions, dispersible polymer powders and polyvinyl acetate solid resins. Polyvinyl acetate solid resins, marketed under the trade name VINNAPAS, are used as binders and/or as additives, for example, in adhesives, sound-damping sheets or as low-profile additives. Bundling its Chinese polymer activities at one site creates synergies, since shared infrastructure, raw-material sources and energy supplies enable economies of scale. In addition, this approach makes transport and logistics especially efficient.