Middle East


K-C adding tissue capacity in Bahrain

SAN FRANCISCO, Sept. 30, 2011 (PPI Pulp & Paper Week) – As Procter & Gamble (P&G) counts on significant growth in China from its fuller-scale array of consumer products, Kimberly-Clark (K-C) — the world’s largest tissue paper producer by capacity — continues building its product position and share in the Middle East.

P&G is the third largest tissue paper producer in North America, behind Georgia- Pacific (G-P) at No. 1 and K-C. Olayan Kimberly-Clark this week launched a $56m tissue manufacturing facility in Askar, Bahrain, almost tripling capacity at the mill, which opened in 1994.

K-C chief executive Thomas Falk attended the launch of its Project Falcon operation, news reports said.

Also, the company said it planned upgrades to two converting lines at its plant in Damman, Saudi Arabia.

The new line in Bahrain can produce 31,000 tonnes of Kleenex tissues and other family comfort products.

K-C’s business share in the region is 23% and totals $300m, with primary focus on hygiene products.

Project Falcon is to raise K-C’s Bahrain production capacity from 14,000 tpy to 45,000, the firm said.

Tissue consumption in the Far and Middle East more than doubled in the past decade from 409,000 tonnes in 2001 to about 901,000 tonnes last year, according to the RISI Outlook for World Tissue Business Mid-Year Update that was published in September. Turkey is the largest market followed by Saudi Arabia. The region represented about 3% of global tissue consumption last year.

“Tissue consumption has grown steadily in the Near and Middle Eastern region — even in 2009 the growth rate was close to 10%,” according to the RISI report. “But the political turbulences that started in 2010 and continued during the year hampered all economic activities, including the tissue business. Our preliminary data for 2010 show a growth rate of less than 5% for the region as a whole, which is low in comparison with recent history.” (News from RISI)