Linde Gas Singapore Pte Ltd has formally commenced commercial operations of its first carbon dioxide (CO2) plant in Singapore, creating a new milestone for the CO2 industry.

Gracing this special event was Deputy Managing Director of the Singapore Economic Development Board, Mr. Tan Choon Shian, accompanied by Sanjiv Lamba, Managing Director of Linde Gas Asia Pte Ltd.

The new CO2 facility will produce approximately 100 tons per day (tpd) of liquid CO2, doubling the local production capacity, making Linde the single largest merchant for CO2 production in Singapore.

With this new investment, Linde Gas Singapore has substantially reduced the Singapore market's dependence on imported CO2, making the city now largely self-sufficient.

Prior to Linde’s investment, Singapore imported approximately 50 tpd of CO2, mainly from Malaysia. Linde’s investment will improve local supply chain reliability and also provide cost benefits to customers through a local production source.

Playing its part to help reduce carbon emissions into the atmosphere, the new facility will utilise the CO2 by-product generated from the synthesis gas production process at the site. Further leveraging the group’s technical expertise and knowledge in the industry, Linde will be able to provide more efficient technology solutions, supply and service in a wide range of applications, such as those for the food and beverage, fabrication, chemicals, pharmaceutical and water treatment industries.

Sanjiv Lamba, who heads Linde’s business in South & East Asia said, “Singapore has always been an important market for Linde and we are confident about the long term growth prospects for the industry here.”

“Today marks an important milestone for Linde in Singapore and the region. With this new plant, we aim to play an even more significant role in the CO2 supply chain, meeting the demands of both the local and export markets by offering faster and more efficient delivery.”

He added, “Despite the economic crisis, CO2 volumes have remained strong in 2009, with demand from the food and beverage industry particularly stable. Across Asia, CO2 demand is expected to grow between five and seven percent per annum over the next few years. We see good prospects in the fabrication and chemicals sectors, and we are leveraging Linde’s technological strength to develop a number of new applications to further grow our CO2 business.”

Tan Choon Shian of EDB commented, “We warmly welcome Linde as a key technological player in Singapore’s chemical industry. Linde’s two new facilities are testimony of the company’s trust and confidence in Singapore as a strategic base to grow their presence in the region. We look forward to partnering them in future collaborations to bring new and efficient solutions to customers on Jurong Island.”

Tapping on the growth of demand for electronic specialty gases (ESG) in Singapore and the region, Linde has also built a supply chain facility on Jurong Island to serve as its regional distribution and storage hub.

With the new facility, Linde is well poised to further grow its ESG business locally and the facility will enhance its capability to supply to its customers as well as to acquire and supply to new customers.

Last year, Linde Gas Singapore had announced a SGD30 million investment into the expansion of its existing HyCO facility at Jurong Island to supply Lucite International Singapore Pte Ltd with carbon monoxide for their new Alpha 1 project.

“Despite the tough economic conditions, Linde’s recent investments in Singapore clearly represent our commitment and confidence in the city state. We are optimistic about the growth prospects as we further expand in Singapore. We will always be identifying and evaluating new opportunities that will bring about greater synergies to Linde’s growth in both Singapore and regionally,” Lamba added.