Japan’s Toyo Ink Group makes $6.5m investment in Myanmar
JAPANESE chemical maker Toyo Ink Group SC Holdings Co has marked its first full foray into Myanmar with plans to develop a new production facility in Yangon’s Thilawa Special Economic Zone next month.
The $6.5 million facility is expected to break ground in November and commercial operations are expected to begin in November next year.
Toyo Ink Group has subleased a 12,000 square meter plot in the Thilawa’s Zone B for its initial construction plans. The land and facility will provide the company with “ample room for expansion for the foreseeable future,” the company said in an emailed response to The Myanmar Times.
The new Myanmar facility will initially be engaged in the production of liquid inks for packaging, adhesives for films and offset inks for the commercial printing market.
While monitoring market and regulatory trends, the company plans to expand production capacity and product offerings in Myanmar. In fact, it is expecting sales from its Myanmar facility to reach the JPY1 billion mark “within a few years.”
Toyo Ink Group makes specialty chemical materials based on functional pigments and polymers, which are the raw materials in printing inks. It does business in a wide array of global markets such as panel displays, electronics, food packaging and medical adhesives, all of which rely on its core materials of inks, polymers and colorants.
The company first began eyeing expansion into Myanmar in 2010. “A number of events have transpired in the past few years that make Myanmar an attractive investment destination, such as the government’s strong support of strengthening trade and investment in the country, improvements to infrastructural networks and continuous GDP growth,” the company said.
The result is an “influx of food manufacturing brands setting up operations [in Myanmar], making it a promising market for us,” it said. Food manufacturers form part of Toyo Ink Group’s customer base.
“Myanmar presents a huge potential for the Toyo Ink Group,” said group CEO Katsumi Kitagawa.. “As the first major ink manufacturer to set up a production foothold in Myanmar, we look forward to establishing an early leadership position in markets where we can play to our strengths like food packaging and commercial printing.”