Asahi to Establish New Float Furnace for Auto Glass in China

Tokyo-based Asahi Glass Co has announced its decision to establish a new float furnace for automotive glass. The company plans to spend less than $100 million (US) to establish a new firm in Suzhou, Jingsu Province, China with a target set up date of May 2004 and production slated to start in the second quarter of 2006.

The Suzhou plant will be Asahi's second Chinese unit equipped with a float glass furnace and the main product of the facility will be raw glass for automotive use. Asahi is anticipating the sale of the product to AGC Automotive Qinhuangdao Co, Asahi Glass' processing base for automotive glass, and other Chinese firms engaged in processing automotive glass, as well as exporting it to Japan.

According to Asahi, China was posting 4.44 million units of auto production in 2003, placing it fourth in the output of vehicles after the United States, Japan and Germany.

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