Russia technical textile and nonwoven industry to get additional support

YarnsandFibers News Bureau 2015-06-14 15:00:00 – Moscow

The Russian government is considering providing additional state support to its domestic producers of technical textiles and nonwovens. Russian Minister of Industry and Trade plans to provide funds which will help producers to complete currently implemented projects and to launch new ones.

According to an official representative of the Russian Ministry of Industry and Trade, part of the funds will be also invested in the technical modernization of the national industry of technical textiles and nonwovens, as the share of outdated equipment in it remains very high.

According to Alexander Alabichev, deputy head of the Tambov regional government, the planned support will be provided in the form of subsidies from the federal budget that will be mostly allocated for the coverage of interest rates on loans, provided by banks.

The amount of state support is not disclosed. There is a possibility that the support may be provided to some other Russian leading producers of technical textiles and nonwovens, such as Kotovsky Plant of Non-Woven Materials, one of Russia’s largest producers of nonwovens and some others.

In addition to producers, part of the funds will be invested in the implementation of some infrastructure projects, and in particular in the establishment of so called Technopark of textiles and technical textiles industry, which is a new large research and production center that will specialize in the design and manufacture of new products in the field of textiles and technical textiles.

The new industrial park will comprise of a business centre, a business park, a business incubator, a centre of technical competence, an information centre, a laboratory centre and other infrastructure. It will be located in the city of Pikalevo in the St. Petersburg region and is expected to be commissioned in 2017.

According to an official spokesman of Dmitry Medvedev, the current economic crisis in Russia, and the devaluation of the national currency – the ruble, caused by Western sanctions, has not resulted in a same decline, which is currently observed in the national textiles industry.

There is also a possibility that part of the allocated funds will be invested in the implementation of one of the most ambitious projects in the Russia’s technical textiles industry in recent years, which involves building a large plant for the production of fibre for the national technical textiles and nonwovens industry in the Ivanovo region.

According to Vasily Gushchin, General Director of CTC Ivregionsintez, the company, which implements the project, the volume of capital expenditures, associated with the building for the last 10-12 months has increased by 60%, compared to initially planned figures and reached 17.7 billion rubles (US$500 million). This became mainly due to the current economic crisis in Russia and devaluation of the national currency, caused by Western sanctions.

However, according to some representatives of the Ivanovo government, despite the current financial difficulties, the project should be implemented in time, due to its importance for the national industry of technical textiles. In this regard, there is a possibility that the Ivanovo plant will be included in the list of projects that will receive additional support from the state.

It is planned that the range of the new plant will include a fibre for nonwovens, spinnable fiber (for mixtures with wool or cotton), as well as special fiber (hollow, siliconized). Also, part of the plans is the establishment of production of chemical swan's down.

Building of the plant will commence in the Q3 of the current year.

According to Gushchin, since 2000 the demand for polyester fibres in Russia has significantly increased and continues to grow today. Currently the annual growth of consumption is varied in the range of 7000 - 8000 tons. Meanwhile, demand for vapour and waterproofing materials has also doubled since then.

To date, implementation of some of the projects has been completed. For example, “Composite” holding company, one of Russia’s leading companies in the field of composites’ production, has recently opened a plant for the production of carbon fibre. The new plant is known as ‘Alabuga-fibre’ and is located in a special economic zone Alabuga in Tatarstan.

The plant has the capacity to produce up to 1700 tonnes of carbon fibre per year, with the possibility of increasing to 2000 tonnes. This volume will fully meet the need of the Russian market in carbon fibre, which is currently estimated at 500 tonnes.

According to results of the recent meeting in the Russian government dedicated to the problems of the national technical textile industry (headed by Russia’s Prime-Minister Dmitry Medvedev), the current condition of the Russia’s technical textiles industry remains relatively good.

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