Southeast Asia’s largest tyre facility opens on Jan 14 | Daily News

Southeast Asia’s largest tyre facility opens on Jan 14

Second phase of US$ 250 mn project to be commissioned in March:
Nandana Lokuwithana showcasing the final product. Pictures by Ranjith Asanka.
Nandana Lokuwithana showcasing the final product. Pictures by Ranjith Asanka.

President Gotabaya Rajapaksa will open Southeast Asia’s largest tyre manufacturing facility - Forentino Tyre (Pvt) Limited in Wagawatte Export Processing Zone on January 14.

According to Company Chairman Nandana Lokuwithana, the project estimated at US 250 million will help bolster the economy by revitalizing exports while creating thousands of employment opportunities. The construction of the second phase of the facility is going on and is slated to be commissioned in March this year. He said that the facility destined to roll in a new page in the industrial sector of the county is aimed at capitalizing the European market.

“I am excited about the project as I am confident it will serve to bolster the economy by way of boosting export revenues as well as generate many new occupational opportunities,” Lokuwithana said.

Lokuwithana when asked whether the company is going for a partnership said they are not going for a partnership right now. “We may go for a partnership. They are still under negotiations,” Lokuwithana said.

Lokuwithana who is also chairman of Ceylon Steel Corporation added that the company succeeded in developing an extent of 160 acres and it is planning to purchase raw material locally for radial production.

“We also intend to source our entire requirement for rubber locally thereby empowering the rubber farmers,” he noted. The chairman added that the country’s rubber production is only 12,000 tonnes per annum and the government is also geared to increase the quantity.

“But we may have to look at our competitors too when the manufacturing of solid tyres is concerned. We will have to follow our competitors in Sri Lanka and other bigger players in the industry”, he said. He added that the project will be a win-win situation for all stakeholders involved.

“The construction of the second phase of the facility is going on and is slated to be commissioned in March this year,” he said. This export-oriented manufacturing plant with its impressive production capacity is expected to bolster the economy by revitalizing exports at this decisive juncture strengthening Government’s efforts to stabilize the local currency in the fate of the global pandemic.