BASF posted sales of approximately € 11.6 billion in 2022 to customers in Greater China. We are committed to being close to our customers and growing together with them. To date, BASF has invested more than €9 billion in Greater China (more than €13 billion with partners) to build a locally competitive production, marketing, sales, technical service, and innovation network which contributes to the profitable growth of the BASF Group. Our investments enable us to serve our local customers’ needs with high-quality sustainable and innovative products and solutions.
Strategic investments in Greater China
- Continued expansion of the Nanjing Verbund site in cooperation with Sinopec
- The Zhanjiang Verbund site project is well on schedule; the first plant has been inaugurated and the core of the Verbund is under construction
- Expanded production capacity in Changsha and Shizuishan for battery materials
- Joint venture formed with Heraeus to provide precious metal recycling solutions in China
To respond to growing demand from various industries in the Chinese market, BASF is strategically expanding its local production, not only at its Verbund sites in Nanjing and Zhanjiang but also at other sites across the country.
In April 2022, BASF and Sinopec broke ground for the expansion of their Verbund site operated by BASF-YPC Co., Ltd. (BASF-YPC), a 50:50 joint venture from both companies in Nanjing. This expansion includes new production capacities of several downstream chemical plants for propionic acid, propionic aldehyde, ethylene amines, ethanol amines and purified ethylene oxide, along with building a new tert-butyl acrylate plant. The new plant is the first time in which that this advanced production technology is applied outside of Germany. The expanded and new plants are planned to come on stream by 2023.
The new Zhanjiang Verbund site, with an investment of up to €10 billion is being built in phases. The project is now well on schedule. In September 2022, BASF announced the inauguration of the first plant of its Zhanjiang Verbund site, producing 60,000 metric tons of engineering plastics compounds per year and bringing BASF’s total capacity for engineering plastics in Asia Pacific to 428,000 metric tons as of 2023. This new plant will enable BASF to meet the growing demand of its customers, particularly in the automotive and electronics industries. A plant for producing thermoplastic polyurethanes (TPU) will come on stream throughout 2023.
The next construction phase of the Zhanjiang Verbund site will focus on the core of the Verbund, including a steam cracker and several downstream plants. This includes a new world-scale Neopentyl Glycol (NPG) plant with an annual production capacity of 80,000 metric tons will be built to strengthen BASF’s position as one of the world’s leading NPG manufacturers. The new NPG plant is expected to come on stream in 2025, by when BASF’s global NPG capacity will be boosted from 255,000 metric tons to 335,000 metric tons annually.
To meet the fast-growing demands of the electric vehicle industry, BASF Shanshan Battery Materials Co., Ltd. (BSBM), a BASF majority-owned company in China (BASF 51%; Shanshan 49%), expanded its battery materials capacity in Changsha, Hunan province, and Shizuishan, Ningxia province in 2022. The new lines in Changsha gradually started commissioning from the fourth quarter in 2022, enabling BSBM to expand its annual capacity for cathode active materials to 100kt.
The expansion project incorporates innovative energy recovery technologies including off-gas, waste heat and oxygen recycling, which are independently developed based on BSBM’s broad industrial operational experience and BASF’s chemical process design know-how.
China has limited natural resources in Platinum Group Metals (PGMs) – which consists predominately of platinum, palladium and rhodium – and strongly relies on imports. To recover PGMs from spent automotive catalytic converters and enable a circular economy, BASF and Heraeus have formed a 50:50 joint venture named BASF HERAEUS (China) Metal Resource Co., Ltd, in Pinghu. The ground-breaking for the construction of the new company was held in November 2022 and will be operational by 2023. Recycled precious metals are also very environmentally friendly and have a CO2 footprint that can be as much as 90% lower than primary metals from a mine.
Increasing the use of renewable energy
Growing capabilities in local production and R&D
- Expanded capacity for automotive refinish coatings in Jiangmen
- Enhanced Chemetall’s local production and innovation capabilities
- Rollout of multiple sustainability certifications at various plants in China
- Several sites celebrated milestones and anniversaries
At BASF, our strategy is to invest where our customers are located and where there is corresponding market growth. We continue to strengthen our advanced production footprint and R&D capabilities in China to support the growing demands of our local customers.
In Shanghai, BASF opened a new production plant for fuel performance additives at its Pudong site in August 2022, addressing the increasing regional demand for fuel performance additives and bringing greater supply stability and flexibility to customers in Asia.
In Jiangmen, BASF expanded the annual production capacity of automotive refinish coatings to 30,000 metric tons at BASF Coatings (Guangdong) Co., Ltd., strengthening BASF’s position as a leading and innovative coatings supplier to the automotive industry in China and the rest of Asia.
In 2022, BASF further enhanced its local production and innovation capabilities in China for its Surface Treatment business unit operating under the Chemetall brand. In October, BASF opened its first regional innovation center for applied surface treatment technology solutions, the Chemetall Innovation and Technology Center in Shanghai. In November, BASF inaugurated the company’s largest surface treatment production site in Pinghu, Zhejiang province. This will support local demand on high-performance surface treatment solutions of various market segments such as automotive OEMs and components, coils, general industry, cold forming, aerospace, aluminium finishing, and glass processing.
BASF has received multiple sustainability certifications to better support our customers to achieve their sustainability targets. BASF’s Thermoplastic Polyurethane (TPU) plant at the Pudong site is certified with the Global Recycled Standard (GRS) and Recycled Claim Standard (RCS), which validate the quantity of the recycled content used in the manufacture of TPU. BASF’s Polyol and Polyurethane Systems (PU) plant in Nansha, Guangzhou, is ISCC+ certified.
BASF has also received a biomass certification for its resins plant at Caojing site, as well as its paint manufacturing sites in Minhang and Caojing, operated by BASF Shanghai Coatings Co., Ltd. With this certification, BASF has launched its first automotive coatings using renewable feedstock, the ColorBrite® Airspace Blue ReSource basecoat, to its customers in China. Certified by REDcert² according to the biomass balance approach, this basecoat product enables around 20% reduction in product carbon footprint, as reviewed by the external sustainability consultant.
2022 marked an important year for the establishment of several BASF sites in Greater China. BASF Shanghai Coatings Co., Ltd., a 60:40 joint venture of BASF and Shanghai Huayi Chemical Co., Ltd., celebrated its 25th anniversary in October. The company manufactures and sells various high quality automotive OEM coatings products to customers in China. The Kaohsiung site, a key production site of the Care Chemical division, celebrated its 30th anniversary in November.
Partnering for low-carbon emission projects
“Sustainability Covalence” celebrated its 1st anniversary, promoting Product Carbon Footprint calculation methodology and low-carbon procurement
Collaborated with Sinopec, Baowu and Shell to explore CCUS Project
Collaborated with Huayuan Group on sustainable and innovative solutions
Partnered with China BlueChemical and Wuhuan Engineering to promote low-carbon development and utilization of marine gas resources
BASF celebrated the first anniversary of “Sustainability Covalence” with its founding partners in Hefei, Anhui province in October 2022. During the forum themed “Unlimited Vitality", which was co-organised by BASF and one of the co-founding partners – Huaheng Biotechnology – BASF shared its carbon calculation methodology and called for action on low-carbon procurement along the value chain.
BASF, Sinopec, Shell and Baowu signed a Memorandum of Understanding in Shanghai in November 2022 on an open-source Carbon Capture, utilization and storage (CCUS) project with a scale of tens of millions of tons per year in East China. The four partners aim to develop a supply chain of low-carbon products and to contribute to the development of the CCUS industry and China’s “dual carbon” targets.
BASF and Huayuan Group – a major Chinese player in the industry of high-end manufacturing, new energy, and advanced materials – formed a strategic partnership on sustainable and innovative solutions. Leveraging BASF’s deep know-how and extensive innovative solutions in the chemical industry, both companies will cooperate closely in metal pre-treatment technologies, pharmaceutical materials, and sustainable packaging materials.
BASF signed a joint development agreement with the leading natural gas producer China BlueChemical Limited Company, and the chemical engineering company Wuhuan Engineering Co., Ltd., to promote low-carbon development and utilization of marine gas resources. BASF’s solution helps to improve process energy efficiency and carbon efficiency beyond existing commercial catalyst and process technology.
- Teamed up with REEF Technology to improve quality of plastic recyclate materials
- Launched innovative industrial eco-packaging with Nippon Paint China
- Formed partnership with local start-up Ingredi and invested in its equity
- Co-developed Paving Integrated Photovoltaic panels with Solar Earth
At BASF, sustainable solutions are often born through crossindustry co-creations. In 2022, BASF collaborated on innovative solutions for low-carbon development, plastic recycling, improved industrial packaging materials, and impactful sustainable progress across industries.
To develop state-of-the-art recyclate formulations for applications used in the automotive, packaging and consumer industries, BASF signed a strategic cooperation agreement with Zhejiang REEF Technology Co., Ltd. BASF will provide newly launched IrgaCycle™ additive solutions, technical consultancy and support on recycled polymer formulations conducted at BASF’s test facilities, co-creating with REEF Technology to support the plastic circular economy and to contribute to the increase of the percentage of mechanically recycled content.
BASF and Nippon Paint China, the leading coatings manufacturer, jointly launched an eco-friendly industrial packaging which has been adopted by the Nippon Paint dry-mixed mortar series products. With BASF’s water-based acrylic dispersion Joncryl® High-Performance Barrier (HPB) as the barrier material, the new packaging material is commercialized for the construction of dry mortar products of Nippon Paint. With excellent vapor and water resistance properties, Joncryl® HPB can replace plastics used in traditional packaging and significantly improve the recyclability of paper-based packaging, achieving the innovative application of “Paper Replacing Plastics” in industrial packaging.
BASF partnered with Ingredi, a local supplier of natural actives and solutions for the personal care industry. BASF also made a strategic equity investment into Ingredi. Established in 2017, Ingredi has shown strong capabilities in identifying new personal care active ingredients from natural plants found in the Himalayas. Through the equity investment from BASF, Ingredi will be able to extend its production facilities. In addition, BASF will jointly work with Ingredi on new solutions and commercialize them in the global personal care market.
BASF and Solar Earth Technologies Ltd. co-developed Paving Integrated Photovoltaic (PIPV) panels which can be installed on new or existing roads and other surfaces. The co-creation is part of the ongoing partnership between the two companies to develop innovative energy-efficient technologies that will advance the next wave of solar power applications.
Collaborating towards sustainable mobility
- Ebusbar showcased a concept supercharging pile made with BASF’s innovative material solutions
- Collaborated on the promotion and extension of the value chain in automotive aftersales refinish industry with major OEMs
As the leading chemical partner for all major automotive OEMs, BASF continued to support China's new energy vehicle industry with advanced battery materials, automotive coatings, engineering plastics and polyurethanes in 2022. These innovative solutions contribute to the rapid development of e-mobility in China.
The charging infrastructure is key in enabling the widespread use of electric vehicles. The construction of charging piles has accelerated in tandem based on market needs and government investment. High-powered charging piles bring higher feasibility and better consumer experience in charging electric vehicles. BASF and Ebusbar showcased a concept supercharging pile made with BASF’s innovative material solutions. Ultramid® PA, Ultramid® Advanced PPA, Ultradur® PBT, and Elastollan® TPU are used in different components of the concept supercharging pile, including the housing of electronic parts, charging guns, breakers, switches, safety components, cables, and a cooling system.
BASF proactively collaborated with major automotive OEMs to promote and explore valued-added solutions along the value chain in the aftersales market. In 2022, BASF successfully launched a Customized Color Design project with LEXUS in China in an effort to improve LEXUS’s customer loyalty and increase its after-sales output. BASF also took this opportunity to show our refinish products directly to car owners. This project yielded a win-win solution for automotive OEMs, car dealers, and car owners.