Multistrada signs Kazakhstan tyre factory contract
According to Indonesian news agency Antara News, tyre maker PT Multistrada Arah Sarana – manufacturer of the Achilles, Corsa and Strada tyre brands – has signed a contract to build a production facility in Kazakhstan. The agency quotes Kazakhstan’s ambassador to Indonesia, Ashkat Orazbay, as stating that “a contract has been signed between Multistrada Indonesia and a Kazakhstan-based company to build a tyre factory.” Antara News did not report the name of the Kazakhstani company or give any further details about the project.
This is not the first time Multistrada has signed an agreement to build a plant in Kazakhstan, nor is the Indonesian company the first tyre maker to consider a joint venture within the country. On 13 April 2012, PT Multistrada Arah Sarana and sovereign wealth fund Samruk-Kazyna (Самрук-Қазына) signed a Memorandum of Understanding to build a 3 million tyre a year factory in Kazakhstan; plans were for this facility to service the both the domestic market and the country’s trading partners. Reports from Indonesia in January of this year suggested that Multistrada had cancelled this plan. It is not yet known whether the deal reported by Antara News is linked to this previous MoU.
An earlier attempt to develop a Kazakhstani tyre industry, a plan that eventually came to nothing, was Nokian Tyres’ interest in setting up a factory there. On 19 October 2007, the Finnish tyre maker signed an agreement with Kazakhstani multi-industrial company Ordabasy Corporation JSC to build a greenfield passenger car tyre factory in the capital, Astana. Nokian Tyres was to hold a ten per cent share in the Ordabasy – Nokian Tyres JSC joint-venture, with the option of increasing its ownership to a minimum of 50 per cent. The plant was expected to be operational some time in 2009 and reach its full capacity of four million tyres per annum by 2012 or 2013. The project was quietly placed on hold, indefinitely, during the 2008 financial year. In the company’s financial review for the period, it wrote that factory construction had been stopped by mutual agreement and “due to tighter financing conditions.” At the time, Nokian said the project might recommence in late 2010 at the earliest. The €12 million advance payment for technical support it had received from Ordabasy was returned.