COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (Jan. 3, 2016) — A Middle Eastern businessman with multiple holdings in Sri Lanka is venturing into the tire business, investing $77.5 million in the establishment of a tire factory on the island nation under the auspices of Rigid Tyre Corp. (Pvt.) Ltd.
The new plant, which will use technology licensed from Italy's Marangoni Group, will have capacity for passenger and medium truck radials as well as OTR and two- and three-wheeler vehicle tires. Annual capacity was not disclosed, but the investor expects employment to be in the 3,000 range.
The venture's investor is Nandana Lokuwithana, chairman of Ceylon Steel Corp. and its member company MA Steel Lanka (Pvt.) Ltd., as well as chairman of Onyx Group, a diversified holding company in United Arab Emirates.
The investors plan a foundation-stone laying ceremony on Jan. 5 at the plant's site, a 100-acre plot in the BOI Industrial Zone, Wagawatta, Horana, Sri Lanka.