The Linde Group member, Ceylon Oxygen Limited is set to invest LKR 1.3bn (EUR 9.3m) in a new air separation unit (ASU) in Sapugaskanda.
The installation will offer a capacity of 65 tons per day (tpd) and is scheduled to come on stream in September 2012. The plant will be built adjacent to Ceylon Oxygen’s existing facility and will be used to augment existing supply.
Ceylon Oxygen’s Chief Executive, Niran Pieris explained the company’s role in the region. He commented, “As the market leader in Sri Lanka, Ceylon Oxygen is the sole supplier of liquid oxygen and liquid nitrogen.”
Consequently this latest development is not just significant to Ceylon Oxygen, but is also vital to the region itself. Pieris advised, “This new plant will be a milestone as it will produce argon and indeed it will make Sri Lanka fully self-sufficient in argon. We are delighted that we will soon be able to offer argon to the local market and potentially for export.”
“Ceylon Oxygen celebrates its 75th year in Sri Lanka this year, and we feel very privileged to participate in and contribute towards the country’s industrial and economic development. While our existing 24 tpd ASU is capable of meeting the country’s total oxygen requirements at present, we anticipate an expansion in demand in line with continued economic growth. Our new ASU will enable us to significantly increase our production capacity and enhance our product and service offerings to our existing and potential new customers in the hospital, ship-building and ship-repair, steel, glass, food and chemicals sectors.”
Sanjiv Lamba, Regional Business Unit Head for Linde’s gases business in South & East Asia explained Linde’s wider objectives behind this move, “The Linde Group acquired Ceylon Oxygen last October with the intent of participating in the rapidly growing Sri Lankan economy. This decision to invest in a new ASU demonstrates our continued commitment to serving our customers and meeting future demand and market opportunities in Sri Lanka.”