Novelis’ first plant to be built in China
Novelis Inc. signed an agreement with the Changzhou National Hi-Tech District to build the company’s first automotive sheet manufacturing facility in China. The agreement, which includes land use rights to more than 160 acres, was signed at a formal ceremony in Changzhou City in the Jiangsu Province of China.
Novelis is a producer of rolled aluminum for the global automotive market and a provider of aluminum sheet to the rapidly expanding Chinese automobile industry. The wholly owned, $100 million plant will have a capacity of 120,000 metric tons per year and is expected to be commissioned for operation in late 2014.
Novelis expects demand for aluminum in the global automotive sector to grow at a compound annual rate of 25 percent over the next 5 years as auto manufacturers look for ways to make their vehicles more fuel efficient. The move into China will position Novelis as the only aluminum sheet supplier capable of serving automotive customers in all major markets of the world.
Novelis is an automotive sheet supplier in Europe where light-weight aluminum has become a popular alternative to steel for vehicle makers. To meet growing demand in North America, the company is expanding its footprint there with a $200 million project to increase automotive sheet capacity by 200,000 tons per year.
Located in the heart of the Changzhou National Hi-Tech District, the new site is close to vital rail lines, the Changzhou deep water port on the Yangtze River and other world-class business and commercial infrastructure. The company plans to ship rolled aluminum coils manufactured at its South Korean operations to the new facility in Changzhou for heat treatment and finishing before delivery to automotive customers within China as well as to export markets. Current Novelis auto sheet customers include Audi, BMW, Chrysler, Ferrari, Ford, GM, Hyundai, Jaguar, Land Rover, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche and Volvo, among others.