BASF opens a production site of plant for concrete additives, alkali-free concrete setting accelerators, and tunneling shield lubricants in Saint Petersburg, Russia. We spoke to Sergey Vetlov, managing Director BASF Stroitelnye Sistemy, about the Russian construction chemicals market.
How do you rate the Russian construction chemicals market?
Sergey Vetlov: According to our estimates, the construction chemicals industry will develop rapidly in the next years. We observe this already now. Large-scale projects and urban expansion programs, transport and infrastructure upgrades are engine of this growth. The demand for our products is confirmed by for example the projects already implemented in the North-West region such as the Western High-Speed Diameter, the runway at Pulkovo airport, plants at the Kola Peninsula or new subway stations.
Vetlov: The level of demand is approaching that one of Europe and the development trends and vectors coincide. The knowledge of mastering new technologies in the different segments will further increase to the European level over the next years. This is the case of concreting, for example. The Russian market is developing now its expertise for the implementation of such technologies with the availability of high-quality materials. Only the best solutions are chosen and applied for building large infrastructure facilities.
Why did you choose St. Petersburg to build your new plant?
Vetlov: We see a great potential for development in the North-West region, the Ural, Siberia and Volga Federal Districts, and other regions of Russia. There is a strong demand for non-standard approaches and for innovative materials for both construction and mining. By investing into local production, we can optimise our logistics and supply chains, shorten lead times and make our solutions even more competitive
How would you describe the competitive landscape in Russia?
Vetlov: The Russian construction chemicals market is highly competitive. Both international players and strong Russian companies are operating here. Our main advantage is that we do not just sell a product, but solutions for specific applications.
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