Asahi Glass seeks perks

Asahi Glass Philippines (AGP), the country’s biggest glass maker, is seeking incentives with the Board of Investments for its P1.8-billion expansion project as the Japanese-owned firm continues to aggressively position itself.

The project aims to expand the company’s float glass line to 189,800 metric tons per year (MTPY) from the current 146,000. This will result a total production equivalent to 4.173 million converted cases.

If approved on a pioneer status, AGP would be entitled to six years in income tax holiday incentives plus two bonus years depending on its performance for a maximum of eight year in ITH.

AGP, local subsidiary of Japanese Asahi, operates a float glass plant in Manggahan Pasig. Its facility, which started commercial operation in 1991, is considered one of the most advanced in the world for different product lines.

The float process is a state-of-the-art technique that floats molten glass on top of a molten tin bath to produce distortion-free glass of superior quality.

At present, AGP is producing figured or patterned glass and special processed glass such as fabricated glass for automotive glass application, mirrors architectural glass such as tempered, heat-strengthened glass, reflective glass, insulated glass, laminated glass and security glass.

This expansion represents the latest of AGP’s continuous investments in the Philippines.

AGP’s most recent one is the $9-million production for export of solar cover glass products.

This is in addition to clear and tinted float glass which AGP is currently producing.

Clear float is used for window and door openings, huge scenic-type openings furniture, curtain walls, showcase openings and interior partitions.

Tinted glass is a heatabsorbing transparent glass of various hues to suit your aesthetic needs. Absorbing 30 to 50 percent of the solar radiation heat transmitted through the glass, it lessens cooling load and induces energy savings. The tinted line comes in blue, green, gray and bronze.

These are also used for window and door openings, furniture, decorative applications, curtain walls, interior partitions and basic glass for automotive safety glass or ballistic glass.

At present, the domestic glass industry feared being the dumping of excess float glass from nearby countries.

The definitive antidumping duty against float glass is set to expire in January next year.

The Philippines imposed the punitive duty on clear float glass imports from Indonesia and Malaysia in January 2001 based on the provisions of the Republic Act 8752 -the Anti-dumping Act of 1999.

The imposition of the duty was meant to protect the domestic glass industry led by the AGP, who asked the government to curb the continued influx of imported cheap glass from China.

At that time, the industry showed proof that China had substantially eaten up the local supply by as much as 30 percent share.

AGP said that majority of the imports were sourced principally from Asian glass producers such as China, Indonesia, Thailand, and Korea.

China is known to be a global player with huge capacity, huge domestic demand and rapidly advancing technology.

So far, China has around 100 production lines for float glass with an annual capacity in excess of 200 million converted cases equivalent to 11 metric tons of glass or 30 percent of total world output.

Dumping into the Philippine shore is made even more attractive with only 10 percent tariffs on glass in the country.

600450 Asahi Glass seeks perks

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