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Japan Knitwear Co., Ltd., also known as the Nikke Company, is preparing a non-woven filter for dust-collecting chambers used in waste incinerators in China.
Due to the slowdown in local market demand in Japan and the increasingly perfect Chinese environmental protection regulations, Japanese companies are seeking to establish a foothold in the Chinese market.
Nikke will invest 300 million yen (about 2.83 million U.S. dollars) in the introduction of a new production line at its subsidiary Ambic in Jiangyin, Jiangsu Province. It is expected that by 2022, the project will triple the annual production capacity in Japan and China to 580,000 square meters. The plant currently produces filtration equipment for thermal power stations but never produced incinerator filters.
Ambic manufactures incinerator filters at its Kagogawa plant in Hyogo Prefecture in western Japan. The plant has an annual production capacity of about 200,000 square meters. In fiscal year 2018, which began in December last year, the company plans to supply 70,000 square meters of filtration products to customers in Japan.
Due to economic growth, the amount of garbage has soared. Nikke expects the number of incinerators in China will increase by more than tenfold.
Currently, Nikkee exports a small amount of products to China. By 2022, when the new production line is completed, the company hopes to sell about 400,000 square meters of filtration products in China.
Incinerator filters need to be made of high-performance nonwovens that withstand high temperatures and are resistant to chemicals. Ambic's non-woven fabrics are known as the best fibers in the world, and are resistant to clogging. Nikke's filters have been used for five years and are about 50% longer than competing products.
Currently there is almost no competitor from Japan in the incinerator filter market in China. Nikke said that its main competitors are Chinese manufacturers and European companies. Ambic hopes to increase China’s sales by promoting the performance of its filters and low replacement costs, and hopes to increase its market share in China from about 3% to 12% in fiscal year 2022.