Schott eyes new plant in China

German glass specialist inks investment agreement with local authorities to build a pharmaceutical tubing production plant in Zhejiang

Patrick Markschläger, Executive VP of SCHOTT AG Business Unit Tubing, and Yibo Li, Head of Jinyun County, at the signing of the investment agreement

Schott AG, the German glass technology specialist, has signed an investment agreement with Chinese authorities to build a pharmaceutical tubing production site in Zhejiang Province.

In a statement, the company said that given demand for high-quality Type 1 pharmaceutical tubing in China, Schott will "significantly invest into a tubing greenfield site for the production of FIOLAX tubing".

Dr Patrick Markschläge, Schott Executive Vice President, Business Unit Tubing, said the new production site in Jinyun County, Zhejiang Province is a clear commitment to developing the local market.

“The site will feature the company’s most advanced production technology, which will strongly support the further development of the domestic pharmaceutical industry," commented Markschläge.

Schott, having a track record of more than 100 years’ experience in the global pharmaceutical packaging industry, will also provide and share glass-related and regulatory know-how.

Demand for drug packaging up

China has been increasingly tighten its regulatory framework to support patient safety standards, hence the demand for high-quality drug packaging products is steadily increasing.

Schott said its FIOLAX glass tubing has become the first choice of glass packaging material in the world since it was launched in 1911.

"Due to the excellent performance concerning chemical and physical properties, it is widely used for high-quality pharmaceutical containers such as vials, ampoules, cartridges and syringes," the company said.

India expansion

Schott has also announced that it is expanding its production capacity with the construction of a new melting tank for pharmaceutical glass tubes its Jambusar plant. The site is located in the Indian state of Gujarat.

The company celebrated the official ground-breaking ceremony in October. Schott said the investment, including new hall, energy supply and warehouse, worth €20m. The project also involves the creation of around 70 new jobs. In total, the plant employs 425 people.

Dignitaries and employees during the ground-breaking ceremony of new tank facility at Schott Glass India.
Photo: Schott

Commenting on the role of India’s growth in the pharma sector, Markschlaeger, said: ‘‘The rapid development of the Indian pharmaceutical market requires a strong growth of high-end pharmaceutical packaging and in consequence high-end pharmaceutical tubing.

"We estimate a market growth for premium packaging and therefore for tubing to continue on a very strong level in the coming years. In addition to the supply of the domestic market, SCHOTT Tubing India will also serve the strong growing Asian market outside of India and will, therefore, be an important hub for the Asian market.”

Commissioning of the new melting furnace is scheduled for early 2020. Then the production capacity at the Jambusar plant will increase by 50%.

Schott is an international technology group in the areas of speciality glass and glass-ceramics. The company serves various industries, including the home appliance, pharma, electronics, optics, life sciences, automotive and aviation industries.

With more than 15,500 employees at production sites and sales offices in 33 countries, the group has a global presence. In the 2016/2017 fiscal year, Schott generated sales of €2.05 billion.

The parent company, SCHOTT AG, is headquartered in Mainz (Germany) and is solely owned by the Carl Zeiss Foundation.

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