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Asian Paints plans largest plant in Haryana

Asian Paints Ltd, India’s largest paints maker, said on Monday its board approved setting up a manufacturing plant in north India, to keep pace with future demand.

The company said it would be its largest plant, but did not disclose the size or the investment involved in the project in Rohtak, Haryana. “We expect we will run out of capacity sometime in future. Since the lead time for a new unit is long, we thought this is a good time to invest,” P M Murty, president, decoratives, told analysts on a conference call.

“The exact quantum of capital is something we are working out and will be announced shortly,” he said, adding it was a sign the company is bullish on the growth of the industry. The company said it is targeting operations to begin by end of 2009 and would start out by making wall finishes.

Asian Paints has seven plants in India, with the largest at Sriperumbudur, currently under expansion to a increase capacity to 100,000 kilolitres per annum. It is also building a 2,500 tonnes a year auto paints plant in south India, in partnership with US-based PPG Industries.

The Indian paint industry has seen demand grow at 18-20 per cent in the last two years, driven by a boom in housing and automobile sectors. Asian Paints has been the largest beneficiary as it dominates the decoratives segment. Asian Paints shares ended 2.6 per cent lower at Rs 841 in the Mumbai market.


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