IFC Finances Clean, Energy Efficient Float Glass Production for HNG in India
Kolkata, India, July 2008—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, will help HNG Float Glass Ltd set up a state-of-the-art plant in Halol in the Indian state of Gujarat. The plant will produce 600 tons of energy-efficient float glass daily, helping meet demand from the construction and automotive sectors, while creating new jobs and developing local supply chains.
IFC will invest up to $25 million in loan and equity in HNG Float Glass, a company set up by C. K. Somany Group. Hindusthan National Glass and Industries Ltd is the flagship company of the group. The project is also supported by DEG, with an investment of $12.5 million.
“Partnering with IFC allows us to leverage its global expertise to help improve our competitiveness and social and environmental practices,” said Mukul Somany, Joint Managing Director of HNG. “This has enabled us to optimize the project’s design. It is also commendable to see the efficiency with which IFC executed this transaction,” he added, noting that he looks forward to a long-term partnership with IFC.
“Our investment will provide long-term funding and equity to HNG Float Glass Ltd. and help it enter a new market segment in India that has tremendous growth potential as it introduces cleaner technology, better energy efficiency, and superior quality,” said Dimitris Tsitsiragos, IFC Director for Global Manufacturing and Services.
Float glass is technically superior to sheet glass, with more safety features and better energy efficiency. It reduces the energy consumption needs of buildings and helps reverse the effects of climate change. This project will also implement environmentally sound natural gas technology, substantially lowering emissions versus older furnace oil technology.
The float glass industry in India remains small, but it is growing rapidly with an increase in demand from the construction and automotive sectors. The availability of quality float glass is critical to the country’s construction sector, which relies on supply to build modern residential and commercial buildings. It is also important for the automotive sector, which is expected to continue growing. This will create a supply gap for float glass in the next few years. The new plant will produce goods to meet this demand, while creating jobs and additional opportunities as local supply chains deepen.
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