SINGAPORE - A new bio-factory for high-performance polymers is being built on Jurong Island, in a move that could lead to about 200 new jobs here.
The 10ha plant by chemicals and advanced materials company Arkema, which will start operations in the first half of next year (2022), will produce a bio-based polyamide 11 material made from castor beans.
The durable plastic material is used in fast-growing sectors, including new energy vehicles, 3D printing, consumer goods and electronics.
Arkema, which is headquartered in France, said in a media statement on Tuesday (June 22) that it has started the final phase of construction of the bio-factory.
Arkema's chief operating officer Marc Schuller said that, besides high-skilled roles for the manufacturing, processes and plant maintenance, the plant will also create jobs in the areas of finance, supply chain, business process management, digitalisation, technical development and marketing.
"The plant will play a key role in enabling manufacturers across Asia, who are seeking high-performance materials and solutions to drive sustainability in their businesses, to design recyclable, sustainable products from the outset," he added.
"This will completely transform the sustainability landscape across Asia."
Arkema's total investment in the region amounts to approximately €450 million (S$721m), the company's biggest investment to date. This also includes investment in downstream polymer capacities in China.
Singapore Economic Development Board chairman Beh Swan Gin welcomed Arkema's move to select Singapore as the location for the manufacturing facility that would support its customers that make environmentally friendly products.
Said Dr Beh: "The investment is an example of how Singapore is leveraging our capabilities in innovation and advanced manufacturing to address green growth opportunities, such as the rising global demand for sustainable, high-performance chemicals and materials."