Dear Ambassador, Mayor of Binzhou Mr. Cui Hong Gang, Guests of Honor and Colleagues
I would like to warmly welcome you to this festive ceremony celebrating Ahlstrom’s new wallcovering line here in Binzhou in the Shandong province.
This is a very important day for Ahlstrom for many reasons. Above all, we are very excited about this opportunity to expand our operations in China and to work and grow together with you here.
Ahlstrom is known for its high performance materials, with a history of 163 years. We have a strong footprint in Europe and the Americas, and we consider Chinese customers very important for our future growth. According to our strategy, we aim to grow with a product offering for a clean and healthy environment.
We all see that the demand for clean water, better air quality, safe food and medical care as well as better quality of living is increasing. Ahlstrom addresses all these needs, and our products improve the functionality and environmental footprint of our customers’ products.
Globally, nearly half of the cars running have filters made from Ahlstrom’s filter media. We are proud to be the market leader in the filter media business, but our ambition is also grow in products that enable better quality of living, such as wallcoverings.
The wallcovering market in China has been steadily growing over the last eight years. China is now among the countries that have the highest consumption of wallcoverings in the world. This growth is expected to continue, and China is expected to become the largest market for wallcoverings in the world within the next two or three years. We at Ahlstrom want to be part of this growth。
Binzhou was selected as a location for our wallcovering manufacturing, since we already have filtration manufacturing here. This location has proved to be a great platform to expand, a platform that can serve many of our business areas and customers across these businesses.