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Oct 23, 2007 18:26 EEST
SOFIA (Bulgaria), October 23 (SeeNews) – French glass and building materials producer Saint-Gobain plans to invest 51 million euro ($72.7 million) in a plasterboard plant in Bulgaria aiming to benefit from the growth in the country’s construction sector, Bulgaria's investment promotion agency said on Tuesday.
The plant, to be located near the city of Stara Zagora in southern Bulgaria, will have an installed capacity for the production of 25 million tonnes of plasterboard yearly, the government's InvestBulgaria Agency said in a statement.
Bulgaria’s construction market has expanded rapidly in the past few years in anticipation yileds on property investments would rise strongly after the country's accession to the European Union. Housing property prices in the Black Sea country, which joined the bloc on January 1, 2007 have risen by some 22% since the beginning of the year.
It would take three years to build the plasterboard plant, a media relations officer for the agency told SeeNews. The plant will be located close to coal-fired power plants grouped in the Maritsa East mining and energy complex and will use as raw material the gypsum released as by-product in electricity generation from coal.
Saint-Gobain sells plasterboard, insulation materials and coatings in Bulgaria. The French company earlier this year opened a 100 million euro flat glass factory in Bulgaria's northern neighbour Romania, which also joined the EU in January.
Saint-Gobain (www.saint-gobain.com) has operations in 54 countries. The group had sales of 41.6 billion euro in 2006, up 18.5% on the year.
($ = 0.7017 euro)
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