Chevron Oronite has made the final investment decision to move forward on its plan to build a wholly-owned additive manufacturing plant in Ningbo, a seaport city in northeast Zhejiang Province, the People’s Republic of China. Oronite stated previously that the initial plan is for the Ningbo manufacturing facility to open as a blending and shipping operation, followed by a phased expansion into component manufacturing as lubricant additive demand grows. The company anticipates that groundbreaking will occur in the fourth quarter of 2018 with an estimated completion date in late 2020. Commercial production is anticipated to begin in 2021.
“Oronite has experienced first-hand the steady increase in additive demand throughout the Asia-Pacific Region, and especially China, over the past several years, and we believe that growth will continue for the foreseeable future,” said Bruce Chinn, president, Chevron Oronite. “After a steady stream of expansion projects at our Jurong Island manufacturing facility in Singapore since it was commissioned in 1999, this investment in a new facility in Ningbo demonstrates, one more time, the seriousness of our commitment to meeting the needs of our customers and the demands they face in the region.”
The company signed an initial investment agreement in China in March 2015 and later that year created a wholly foreign-owned enterprise based in Ningbo. In December 2016, Oronite announced that it had advanced to the engineering and design phase of the project. Throughout that period, the company also expanded its technical support and product development capabilities at its growing technology center in Shanghai.
“The dedicated work of the employees of Oronite, along with the strong support of our partners at the Ningbo Economic & Technical Development Zone (NETD), are making this project a reality,” said Koon Eng Goh, general manager, Manufacturing and Supply Chain, Asia-Pacific Region, Chevron Oronite.
“Construction of this manufacturing facility will not only help us keep pace with our customers’ future needs, but also forge new relationships throughout China that we expect to endure for years to come.”
The land where the manufacturing facility will be located is part of the NETD, which is located near the Ningbo Port, one of the largest ports in the world in terms of annual cargo throughput.
Headquartered in San Ramon, California (USA), Chevron Oronite maintains regional offices in Houston (Americas Region), Paris (Europe-Africa-Middle East Region), and Singapore (Asia-Pacific Region); operates manufacturing sites in Belle Chasse, Louisiana (USA), Gonfreville (France), Singapore, and Mauá (Brazil); an affiliated blending and shipping plant in Omaezaki, Japan; technology centers in the USA, France, The Netherlands, Japan and China and has interests in additive companies operating in other locations, including India.