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China Becomes Lanxess's Biggest Market in Asia in 2006
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Lanxess AG, the German chemical maker spun off from Bayer AG, said on Friday that China overtook Japan to become the company's largest market in Asia in 2006.


Last year, company sales in China rose 12 percent to 327.3 million euros, accounting for 26.6 percent of sales in Asia.


Lanxess planned to build a new ion exchange resin plant in the Asia-Pacific region this year, which would cost tens of millions of euros, the company said in a statement.


Three countries -- China, India and Singapore -- are bidding for the project that will manufacture products for use in industrial sewage disposal.


Wang Yongli, president of Lanxess Group Greater China, declined to disclose the names of the candidate sites from the three countries.


The company's global sales dipped 2.9 percent to 6.94 billion euros last year due to "portfolio changes and adverse currency effects, especially regarding the US dollar".


But last year's pretax profits soared to 376 million euros, compared with 28 million euros in 2005. Lanxess AG, headquartered in Leverkusen, Germany, has 16,700 employees working in 50 production sites in 18 countries.


(Xinhua News Agency March 24, 2007)

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