Nizhnekamskshina to Commission 1.2 million Tyre All-Steel Radial Plant
Russian petrochemicals group OAO Tatneft (Kama and Niznekamshina’s parent company) said it is set to expand its tyre manufacturing capacity with the commissioning of a 1.2 million tyres a year all-steel truck and bus radial plant near its existing Niznekamshskina plant in Niznekamsk. The commissioning follows investment of around 17 billion rubles (£362 million; 388 million euros; US$578 million) in line with a plan first conceived in 2006. Increasing demand in this part of the Russian market is said to be behind the move, with Tatarstan truck manufacturer KamAZ Auto Manufacturer lined up as a customer.
According to Tatneft such large-scale construction of a factory from scratch is “really unique in today's Russia” and is part of a strategic investment programme scheduled to continue until 2013 – providing for the “further increase of the Kama-Euro type tyre production.” According to a company statement, Tatneft has implemented major investment projects in this field during the past few years, such as organizing the production of Kama-Euro passenger cars and light truck tyres using Pirelli technology and the construction of a new rubber-mixing complex.
The new plant, which Tatneft refers to as its “SSC Tire Factory” (SSS = Solid Steel Cord) reportedly allows the company to produce tyres which offer 8 per cent more weight capacity and “significantly reduce fuel consumption.” In addition, SSC tyres can reportedly be retreaded up to three times, thus extending potential life up to 500,000 kilometres, says Tatneft.
Tatneft-Neftekhim Management Company made the factory commissioning announcement at a round table discussion on the problems of tyre manufacturing held in conjunction with OAO SIBUR — Russian Tires Company. The event, held in Moscow discussed “the state and prospects of developing domestic tyre production, the problems associated with growing pressure from foreign competitors, as well as the issues of developing modern domestic technologies and training professionals for the tyre industry.”
Reports: Tata Motors interested in Nizhnekamsk tyres
There are signs that Nizhnekamskshina tyres could soon be entering the Indian market following interest from leading Indian OEM Tata Motors. Mumbai, India-based Tata Motors Limited is reportedly performing homologation tests of Kama-brand truck tyres in order to obtain local quality certificates. According to local news agency, Tatar-Inform, the Kama trading house (part of the Tatneft Neftekhim) made the announcement in a statement following a visit to India. Indian companies apparently discussed placing production orders from the Nizhnekamskshina plant during the trip.
According to news agency, the main purpose of the recent trip to India was to “explore the Indian market, establish contacts with Tata Motors and examine requirements for auto tyres imported…[into] the country.” The delegation is said to have visited Delhi, Mumbai, Puna, Ludhiyana, and met with the management of Tata Motors, Amco International, SRB Group, as well as with Russia’s trade representative and the Russian consul general in India. The India trip reportedly follows an Indian delegation’s earlier visit to Nizhnekamsk.
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