Haldor Topsoe to build new Brazil production plant for automotive catalysts

Haldor Topsoe A/S is currently in the process of establishing a new production facility in Brazil, the company announced on Thursday.

The facility will focus on manufacturing catalysts that can remove dangerous nitrogen oxides (NOx) as well as particulates and hydrocarbons from the engine exhaust of diesel vehicles such as buses and trucks. 

Recently Topsoe leased two buildings in an industrial park located in Joinville, Santa Catarina, and work is now ongoing to obtain necessary regulatory approvals and place orders for production equipment. 

The goal is to get the facility up-and-running within the coming year. 

“Establishing production locally is an important prerequisite for us to realize our full potential in Brazil, but also other parts of Latin America," said Bjerne S. Clausen, CEO of Haldor Topsoe A/S. "Brazil is officially encouraging that import of parts is converted into local production – and backs it up with concrete incentives. For instance, if the local content of a heavy duty vehicle exceeds 70%, financing will be granted at a subsidized interest rate. Moreover, import duties on catalysts from abroad will increase and thereby create a a strong incentive to establish production on Brazilian ground."

Of all the countries in the Latin American region, Brazil offers the largest growth opportunity for Topsoe’s automotive catalysts, according to company officials. There are close to 40 million passenger cars, trucks and buses on the Brazilian roads today, and Brazil is by far the largest manufacturer of heavy duty vehicles in the region. In 2013 more than 3.7 million vehicles left the assembly lines in the country. Out of those, 225,000 were heavy duty vehicles. 

Brazil introduced the new emission standard Euro V on January 1, 2012. Consequently, for more than two years, all trucks and buses leaving assembly lines in the country have been outfitted with catalysts. All of these catalysts, however, have so far been produced outside of Brazil. 

Topsoe describes itself as a global player in the field of treating engine exhaust from diesel vehicles. Devices using Topsøe’s catalysts are installed in the vehicle’s muffler to remove harmful substances. Since the sale of these devices began in 2006, more than 250,000 heavy trucks and buses worldwide have been equipped with Topsoe’s catalysts and technology. 

New laws in Europe are gradually tightening the regulation of diesel vehicle emissions, and other countries – including a number of key emerging economies around the world – are beginning to enact laws modeled on European standards. 

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