September 9, 2008

Teijin to Make Chemical Products Solely From Bio Resources: Pres.

Tokyo, Sept. 9 (Jiji Press)--Major Japanese diversified textile maker Teijin Ltd. intends to make its corporate structure oil- independent by using bio-based materials, President Shigeo Oyagi said in a recent interview with Jiji Press.

Teijin plans to replace all oil-derived materials used in its chemical products, including plastics, films and fibers, with bio- derived resources, including plants, in the future, Oyagi said.

Textile makers, which have diversified their operations into production of such chemical products as liquid crystal display film and automobile parts, are under pressure due to soaring crude oil prices.

Last year, Teijin bought a 50 pct stake in NatureWorks LLC, which is a unit of U.S. grain giant Cargill Inc. and makes corn-based plastics and fibers.

Oyagi said his company will be able to manufacture parts for LCD panels and solar batteries from bio-based resources although it may take a long time.

The company aims to use a wide range of plants including sugar cane and weeds so that it can achieve its goal without negatively affecting the food supply.

In the interview, Oyagi also said his company intends to promote merger and acquisition activities in its pharmaceutical operations in a bid to increase annual sales in the sector to some 30 billion yen, or 30 pct of its total sales, up from the current 10 pct.

The company hopes to increase profits from its pharmaceutical operations to some 50 pct of its overall profits, he added.

Teijin is looking to buy a midsize domestic firm that can develop new drugs and to expand its pharmaceutical business overseas, the president said.

In the sector, the company is set to focus on operations related to bones and joints, specifically, rehabilitation.END

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