Tokyo, Japan -Â Bridgestone Corp.is to expand production capacity at its new plant in Kitakyushu, which is planning to start operations in the second half of 2009, to meet increasing global demand of large and ultralarge off-the-road radial tyres. In line with this, Bridgestone will also increase production capacity of steel cord for these tyres at its plant in Saga. Approximately ¥32 000 million (€194 million) has been earmarked for the both projects.
These tyres are aimed primarily at mining and quarrying vehicles used around the world. Bridgestone announced at the end of last year its intention to construct a plant for large and ultralarge OTR tyres in Kitakyushu. The decision to boost production capacity at the new plant was made based on projections of continued strong growth in demand.
Expansion work will get underway in the second half of 2008, with production scheduled to begin in the second half of 2010. As a result, production capacity is projected to increase by around 50 tonnes of new rubber a day by the end of 2012, which will be up roughly 20% from the time the current expansion work is complete.
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Press release from Bridgestone