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Hereaus and BASF set up Chinese hub to recover precious metals

German technology group Heraeus has invested almost US$ 100 million (EUR 86 million) in a precious metals refining and recycling plant in China. The facility in Nanjing is due to open its doors this September.

Heraeus has witnessed a ‘very strong demand’ for platinum group metals in China. The Nanjing hub, which covers 84 000 square metres, is said to be a logical step to take advantage of this fast-growing market. The new facility will make precious metal-based products for use in the auto, glass, fertiliser and other industries. The site will employ 300-350 workers at full capacity and help boost logistics and financing services for clients in China.

‘We already have some refining capacity in China. With higher demands expected, we’ve decided to consolidate and expand those into one big factory where we can do refining but also make chemical products,’ says Andre Christl, who heads Heraeus’ precious metals department.

US expansion

Heraeus also celebrated the completion of a 2800 square metre extension of its Wartburg, Tennessee facility on 30 May. The multi-million dollar project was launched in the spring of 2016 and increases the plant’s pre-processing capacity to meet growing demand from customers in the chemical, electronics, automotive and jewellery industries.

The US site was established in 2004 to treat and store both hazardous and non-hazardous materials containing precious metals. The expansion has created 30 new jobs.

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