Irish Kingspan to invest €200 million in building technology campus in Ukraine

Irish Kingspan to invest €200 million in building technology campus in Ukraine

Irish insulation group establishes project team to identify a site, probably in west side of Ukraine

Insulation specialist Kingspan has said it plans to invest €200 million in a new building technology campus in Ukraine, subject to certain conditions.

It will manufacture advanced insulation products and district heating solutions. The group said the technologies are “central to the urgent effort” to decarbonise the global built environment, which is responsible for 39 per cent of all energy-related carbon emissions.

Kingspan announced on April 5th it had completed its exit from the Russian market and divested its operations to local management.

A spokesman for the company confirmed on Tuesday that its exit from Russia and sale of the business “has been completed in an orderly fashion”, with the safety and welfare of its staff as “a key priority”.

Russia accounted for less than 1 per cent of Kingspan’s global operations. Its products are no longer available for sale in Russia, the company has said.

The group has had a presence in Ukraine for more than 10 years, and the spokesman said it has had the intention of building a substantial operation there “at the appropriate time” over that period.

“Kingspan’s international expansion has seen the company build up a significant presence in central and eastern Europe over many years to meet the growing demand for energy efficient buildings,” he added.

As to the likely effect of the ongoing war in the region on the project, the spokesman said: “It’s obviously a complex situation but our commitment to this project is very clear.”

Commenting on the investment, Kingspan chief executive Gene Murtagh said: “This investment sits at the crossroads of three crises: the climate crisis, the energy security crisis and the crisis caused by the Russian war against Ukraine.

“The new building technology campus we are planning will make positive contributions on all three fronts, supporting Ukraine as it rebuilds its economy, meeting demand across central and Eastern Europe for energy efficient buildings, and helping Europe to reduce reliance on oil and gas imports.”

He said the ambition was for the development process to begin immediately – subject to appropriate security conditions – with the facility expected to be fully complete within five years.

He added that Kingspan had appointed a project team to identify a suitable site, likely to be in the west of the country, and was liaising with the Ukrainian government to this end.

Welcoming the move, Ukraine’s foreign minister, Dmytro Kuleba, called on other companies to isolate Russia.

“Our goal is not solely renewal and rebuilding of the destruction caused by Russian aggression but also the creation of a completely new, modern and innovative economy leveraging leading urban development expertise and green technologies,” he said.

“For this reason, based on President Volodymyr Zelenskiy’s vision, we created the recovery plan for Ukraine, and Kingspan’s project meets both the spirit and the goal of our plan.

“We invite the international business community to follow this example by withdrawing completely from Russia and relocating their businesses in Ukraine. This will benefit both a company’s standing and its long-term strategy.”

Kingspan has 198 manufacturing facilities around the world and employs over 19,000 people globally.

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