Afton Chemical Corporation, a global leader in the lubricant and fuel additive market, today announced the completion of the Phase II expansion of its Chemical Additive Manufacturing Facility in Jurong Island, Singapore. This milestone was marked by a special visit from Singapore’s Minister for Trade & Industry Mr. Chan Chun Sing, who also made a speech and toured the facility.
As a wholly owned subsidiary of NewMarket Corporation (NYSE: NEU), Afton has been a leading player in the lubricant and fuel additive marketplace for over 90 years. The company was founded on a Passion for Solutions® and has maintained a focus on customizing commercial and industrial solutions that meet customer needs.
Afton begun its Singapore manufacturing operations in May 2016, when it announced the Phase I opening of its Jurong Island plant. Phase II’s investment of S$222 million is more than Phase I’s initial investment of S$158 million, bringing the total investment in Singapore to S$380 million.
“This facility was key to Afton’s plans to ensure that our products are ‘Made in Asia for Asia’. Our Jurong Island plant now has the full capability to produce core engine oil additives that we need for the Asia Pacific region,” commented Gina Harm, Afton Chemical’s President. “We are also proud to say that we are investing in advanced technologies that will contribute towards longer term goals of reducing carbon emissions,” said Harm.
Phase II’s expansion kickstarts production of advanced ashless dispersants and anti-wear components. All are critical components in several of Afton’s products, and will help passenger vehicles and commercial vehicles meet performance standards of the future. The latest expansion also enhances the support network in Asia Pacific, which already has established R&D innovation centers in Suzhou, China and Tsukuba, Japan.
“We continue to invest in Singapore because we see it as the central hub of the region. It has a strong record of safety, security and integration – conditions we value. Furthermore, there is a strong talent pool and retention is very positive. From a manufacturing perspective, Singapore is the perfect place to distribute not only to ASEAN but also China. For the three major demand clusters in China, it only takes 20 days to deliver to and from Singapore,” added Sean Spencer, Afton Chemical Asia’s Vice President. “Essentially, we are improving customer satisfaction with shorter lead times and enhanced security of supply.”
This expansion will increase Afton’s workforce in Singapore by 123%. The facility will house state-of-the-art equipment and will be the first plant in the Afton family to offer integrated management systems and automated full traceability. It will occupy approximately 45,500sqm in land area and will continue production of key components used in engine oil additive packages such as ZDDP Antiwear, Ashless Dispersants and Sulfonate Detergents.
“Asia’s rapid urbanisation and growth is driving the demand for transportation fuel and specialty chemical products. Afton’s Phase II expansion is testament to the attractiveness of Singapore as a hub to capture growing opportunities in the region, and the ability of our workforce to undertake high value-added manufacturing,” said Ms Cindy Koh, Director, Energy& Chemicals, Singapore Economic Development Board. “We look forward to partnering with Afton Chemical in their growth plans for Asia.”