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General Tyre East Africa… India natural rubber… Dow Chemical Co… Brexit… Natural rubber slump… Malaysia’s NR… Bridgestone Americas… IRCo… EU/Japan tariffs… ECHA… DowDuPont… Thailand… Wacker… LG Chem… Ineos… Pirelli… Linde… AkzoNobel… Butadiene…
28/6 The Tanzanian government is considering reviving the
General Tyre East Africa Ltd tire plant and is talking to potential investors, the All Africa news website has reported. The operation is now fully state-owned after government acquired 26% of shares from
Continental AG. Officials are assessing costs of purchasing new and modern machines before handing it over to a new investor, the report said.
India, an initiative by the country’s Rubber Board’s has helped increase
natural rubber production to 50,000 tonnes in May, 8.7% higher than in the same month last year, the Hindu Business Times has reported. Output in the first two months of the current fiscal, reached 98,000 tonnes, a 15.3% increase year-on-year.
Andrew Liveris, chairman and CEO of
Dow Chemical Co. was presented 27 June with the 2017 Global Leadership Award from the US-India Business Council. The award recognises people for “creating inclusive business environments, integrating India in the global supply chain and advancing core values such as manufacturing, innovation and scale in tough market conditions.”
23/6 Deloitte has warned that a hard
Brexit could lead to rising car prices in the UK and putting 18,000 jobs at risk within the German auto industry. The consulting firm has predicted that the UK’s departure from the EU without favourable trade agreements could raise price of cars by as much as €5,600 per vehicle, leading to a potential 20% fall in sales in the UK market.
21/6 Indonesian authorities are unfazed by a recent drop in
natural rubber prices as market fundamentals remain strong, Reuters has reported. According to Moenarji Soedargo, chairman of the Indonesian Rubber Association, “supply and demand conditions now are quite healthy, even better than two years ago.”
natural rubber output dropped 39.2% in April 2017 to 48,889 tonnes compared to production levels the month before, according to data provided by the country’s Department of Statistics.
Bridgestone Americas Inc.‘s off-road tire plant in Bloomington, Illinois, received a platinum-level distinction in the Caterpillar Supplier Quality Excellence Process Certification, which is the highest possible honor.
Bridgestone Americas Inc.‘s off-road tire plant in Bloomington, Illinois, received a platinum-level distinction in the
Caterpillar Supplier Quality Excellence Process Certification, which is the highest possible honor.
19/6 Officials of the
International Rubber Consortium (IRCo) met in Indonesia over the weekend to discuss the ailing natural rubber market. According to a Reuters report, discussion items included measures to stabilise rubber prices though curbs on exports and production.
The EU is offering to scrap import tariffs on most Japanese car parts in return for Tokyo ending import tariffs on agricultural food & drink products. The proposal emerged around talks aimed at reaching an ‘economic partnership agreement’.
ECHA announced 16 June that the Member State Committee has unanimously agreed to identify bisphenol A as substances of very high concern (SVHCs). The decision was based on a proposal by France, that the polymer plasticiser and feedstock has endocrine disrupting properties for human health.
16/6 The planned merger of
Dow Chemical and
DuPont into DowDuPont has gained US antitrust clearance from the country’s department of justice. To get the green light DuPont has agreed to divest certain parts of its crop protection portfolio, and Dow will divest its global ethylene acrylic acid copolymers and ionomers business. The companies still expect $3bn of cost synergies and $1bn of growth synergies from the merger set to close in August.
Thailand’s government has extended and expanded financial support programmes intended to help rubber growers cope with falling prices for the commodity, Reuters has reported. The measures include loans as well as subsidies to around 11,500 families in the country which is the world’s largest producer of NR.
In the US,
Wacker officially opened its R&D Center for Silicones in Ann Arbor, Michigan on 13 June. Located close to the company’s Adrian, MI, facility, the unit will support business and product development in North America. The facility is located at the ‘co-work campus’ of the Michigan Innovation Headquarters (MI-HQ) in Ann Arbor.
LG Chem has reported a fall in profitability of its synthetic rubber business during Q1 2017 on the back of short-term feedstock (butadiene) price spike. This is despite 63% rise in Q1 sales to KRW563 billion in the three months to end of March.
Ineos has announced €2bn plans to build a world-scale PDH (propane dehydrogenation) unit in Europe, to produce 750ktpa of propylene for its units across the continent. The multinational chemicals maker also intends to increase the ethylene capacity of its cracker facilities at Grangemouth in Scotland and Rafnes in Norway to over 1,000ktpa each.
Pirelli has joined Project Black S, a collaborative venture between ‘premium’ car maker
Renault Sport F1 Team. It will design and construct bespoke tires for the project to study how a hybrid powertrain – developed with the Renault Sport F1 team – could enhance the performance and dynamics of an Infiniti Q60 car. Pirelli said it was attracted to the Project Black S as “a true track-to-road technology transfer” project.
Linde has won a major contract by PJSC
Nizhnekamskneftekhim (NKNK) to supply an olefin plant in the city of Nizhnekamsk, Tatarstan, Russian Federation. In a first expansion stage, NKNK’s new naptha cracker complex will have capacity to produce 600ktpa of ethylene and over 600ktpa of other chemical products including propylene and butadiene. Capacity will be doubled in the future with the addition of a further plant. The new olefin plant is due on stream in 2022.
Pirelli has launched Pentathlon D, its first tire in the Pentathlon range for premium long haul drive applications in North America. The product is one of the latest tires to launch from TP Commercial Solutions LLC, an entity of the Pirelli brand of radial truck tires, agricultural tires and OTR tires in the US and Canada.
AkzoNobel said it is now focused on splitting off and divesting its Specialty Chemicals unit within 12 months. The unit produces a number of chemicals used by rubber processors within a broad portfolio including organic peroxides, azo initiators and cobalt and amine accelerators. The Dutch group recently turned down a €24.6bn takeover offer by
Zotefoams is to invest in two new high-temperature foaming vessels at its UK site in Croydon. The move will increase production of its cross-linked, closed-cell foams based on fluoropolymers, nylon or thermoplastic elastomers. The materials are produced using the company’s high-pressure nitrogen-expansion process.
12/6 Luxury car maker
Aston Martin has urged politicians in the UK to provide “rapid reassurances” to business so they can continue to invest when no political party won an overall majority at the 8 June general elections. According to a Reuters report, the car maker CEO Andy Palmer said the industry needed “rapid and decisive policy direction” so it could make investments for long term growth and “ensure the global competitiveness of the British economy.”
8/6 Chemicals market-watcher ICIS has reported continued declines in
butadiene prices in North America and Asia, including falls of almost a third in the US. The pricing trends are a complete reverse from a few months ago, when shortages left some synthetic rubber producers unable to buy the feedstock at any price.
Sri Lankan rubber growers were impacted by the recent floods and landslides in the country, Reuters has reported. The rubber crop was hit by the worst torrential rains in 14 years, it said, adding that the loss of agricultural exports would put pressure on the economy.
Avon Rubber has won a contract to supply 37,000 of its FM50 respirators together with related spares and accessories to an unnamed customer. Avon announced that it expected to fulfil the order during the first half of its 2018 financial year, starting September 2017.
Toyota defended its title as the world’s most valuable car brand in a new ranking, holding off
Tesla, meanwhile, made the biggest improvement, rising two spots to No. 8 because of a 32% increase in its brand value. Toyota’s brand value decreased 3% to $28.7 billion as increased sales were offset by tough currency challenges as well as increased investment and rising labor costs, according to the BrandZ Top 100 Most Valuable Global Brands study released by market researcher Kantar Millward Brown.
6/6 In Canada,
Tyromer Inc. of Windsor, Ontario is one of six automotive industry suppliers to share a $11.5-million Canadian federal fund to help develop technologies for ‘greener’ cars. The company will receive up to $3.4m for recycling scrap rubber and produce seals for car windows and doors.
6/6 Europe will need to reassess its environmental standards to remain competitive after the US said it would withdraw from the Paris climate pact, warned an official of the German automotive industry lobby group
VDA. The decision, he said, “makes it inevitable that Europe must facilitate a cost efficient and economically feasible climate policy to remain internationally competitive.”
5/6 Russian petrochemical supplier
Sibur may consider an IPO after launching production at its ZapSibNeftekhim project (ZapSib 2) in Tobolsk, Siberia in 2019, according news reports. Speaking to reporters on the fringe of the St Petersburg International Economic Forum, Leonid Mikhelson, Sibur’s co-owner said his company was “looking at IPO in future”, a Reuters report said.
Zhejiang Petrochemical will use four Honeywell UOP pressure swing adsorption units to supply high-purity hydrogen for its new refining and petchem complex in Zhoushan, Zhejiang Province. The complex, which will also Honeywell distributed control systems, will be the largest crude-to-chemicals complex in China and one of the largest in the world.
4/6 “Success in industry 4.0 is not the deepest pockets,” advises a new
KPMG UK report. It found 56% of UK manufacturers excited by industry 4.0 but unsure about how to capitalise on it. “Manufacturers need to start being bolder in their vision, strategies and actions if they are to succeed,” said the firm.
4/6 Morecambe, UK haulier
JM Gorry & Son has switched to a 100%
Michelin policy after a trial set of Michelin Remix retreaded tyres outperformed competing brands’ new tires fitted to identical vehicles, said the tire maker. The family-run company, which previously fitted a mix of budget and premium brand tires, provides traction services with its fleet of 44 Volvo FH trucks.
Michelin has also announced that paper and corrugated packaging producer DS Smith is rolling out its trailer telematics programme across its entire 207-strong fleet, after reporting zero trailer tire-related breakdowns during a 40-unit, six-month pilot project. Effitrailer telematics units are being fitted to 207 single-deck SDC trailers curtainsiders as factory-fit original equipment, and delivered as part of a rolling 18-month fleet renewal.
Bridgestone has won a patent infringement lawsuit against Wanli Tire in China. The case in the Shanghai Intellectual Property Court concerned the Chinese company’s manufacture and sale of tires with tread patterns used in certain Bridgestone Dueler SUV tires. (ERJ report)
2/6 Also in China,
Yokohama Rubber Co. aims to increase its production capacity for passenger-car tires there to 13.6 million units a year by 2020, said Nikkei. This would be about 50% above 2016 levels across its two Chinese plants: in Suzhou, Jiangsu Province, and Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province
BMW has been forced to cut production after supplier Robert Bosch was unable to deliver enough steering parts for its 1-, 2-, 3- and 4-series models. BMW’s plants in Leipzig and Munich, Germany, along with plants in Shenyang, China, and Rosslyn, South Africa, were hit.
Indian Rubber Board has announced an up trend in natural rubber production in the country , as April showed an increase of 23.1% compared to the same period the year before. Production during April was 48,000 tonnes up from 39,000 tonnes in the previous April . If this trend continues, said the board, production of NR will reach 800,000 tonnes during the fiscal year.
24/5 German prosecutors have searched
Daimler sites as part of an investigation into the company’s false advertising and the possible manipulation of exhaust gas after-treatment in diesel cars, according to a 22 May Reuters report. Quoting the Stuttgart public prosecutor’s office, the report said 23 prosecutors and about 230 police and state criminal authorities, were involved in searching 11 sites in the German states of Baden-Wuerttemberg, Berlin, Lower Saxony and Saxony.
24/5 Chinese automaker
Zhejiang Geely Holding will buy a 49.9% stake in struggling carmaker Proton from Malaysian conglomerate DRB-Hicom. Geely will also acquire a majority share of 51% in UK sports automaker Lotus Cars from Proton, Geely said in a statement on 23 May.
19/5 In a recently published test conducted by Czech automobile club “Autoclub”,
Continental‘s ContiPremiumContact 5 summer tire won the first place in the SUV tire test, the German tire-maker has announced. The experts tested 215/65 R 16 tires fitted to a VW Tiguan, looking at a total of 12 criteria. The test line-up included ten models from European, American and Asian tire brands.
18/5 Russia has offered to barter up to 10 of its Sukhoi Su-35 fighter jets for natural rubber from Indonesia, the Jakarta Post reported earlier this week. However, the Indonesian government remains undecided about the proposed $600-million trade, despite it being welcomed by
Gapkindo (the Indonesian Rubber Company Association).
16/5 Renault said 90% of its factories were running normally on 15 May morning after the automaker had earlier halted production at sites in France and Romania to prevent the spread of ransomware. According to a report by ERJ sister publication Automotive News Europe, Renault stopped production at several sites on 13 May to prevent the spread of a global cyberattack that hit its computer systems the previous day. The UK plant of alliance partner Nissan in Sunderland, northeast England, was also affected.
16/5 Britain has refused to release details of its negotiations with
Bentley Motors last year about a new investment decision ahead of Brexit, Reuters reported on 15 May. According to the Reuters report, the UK has claimed that any disclosure could harm the government’s ability to get a good deal with the European Union. Bentley is expected to make a decision with regards to the production of future models at the start of 2018.
16/5 An explosion at a German factory operated by
Schaeffler has left 13 injured, four of them seriously. According to a Reuters’ report, the explosion took place in the town of Eltmann, north of Nuremberg, where Schaeffler’s lead plant for production of rolling bearing components for the company’s FAG unit is located.
12/5 New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has announced a low-cost allocation of 1.5 megawatts of hydropower to
Sumitomo Rubber USA to support an expansion at Sumitomo’s tire manufacturing facility in Tonawanda, New York. The New York Power Authority Board of Trustees approved the allocation at its 2 May meeting, according to a press release from Cuomo’s office.
Shin-Etsu Silicones of America Inc. has launched its newest high consistency rubber line, Sil-X-Shin silicone elastomers. The platinum, addition-cure series includes two distinct HCR extrusion versions: methyl vinyl and phenyl silicone, specifically engineered for extruded tubing and profiles, and designed for use in healthcare, beverage and architectural glazing applications.
12/5 Forbes magazine has named
Groupe Michelin as one of “America’s Best Employers” for 2017. According to the Forbes ranking, Michlin is ranked first within the American automotive industry and 34th with the top 500 employers.
12/5 The Maryland legislature has passed a bill banning lead and mercury wheel weights, making it the eighth state to do so. The bill passed in April makes it illegal to use external wheel weights containing more than 0.1% of lead or mercury by weight beginning in 2020.
Daimler’s Mercedes-Benz regained global premium-car leadership last year by outselling BMW for the first time since 2005, a feat it wouldn’t have achieved without all its factories running at full capacity. Production chief Markus Schaefer makes sure Mercedes’s output keeps pace with record demand. He spoke about the company’s production expansion plans with Automotive News Europe Correspondent Christiaan Hetzner and Michael Gerster, a reporter with ERJ sister publication Automobilwoche.
Versalis is taking part in Chinaplas in Guanghzou, China, 16-19 may 2017, wherein it will be showcasing its technical approach in the automotive industry. In an short announcement, the petrochemical arm of Italian energy giant, ENI, said focus will be the product mix and its applications.
Bridgestone has been selected by Alfa Romeo to supply tires for its first premium mid-size SUV. According to a Bridgestone press release, the Dueler H/P Sport tire, engineered with run-flat technology (RFT) will be fitted on the all-new 2018 Alfa Romeo Stelvio. Authorities in the city of Hanover, Germany, have evacuated about 50,000 from their homes while defusing three World War II British bombs. According to a BBC report, a Continental AG tire plant was among the building evacuated on 7 May.
5/5 Indian tire maker
MRF has reported Q4 profits down by almost a third year-on-year, mainly due to rising raw material costs. Net profit fell 32% on sales just 2% year-on-year for the three months to 31 March.
Eaton Corp. Q1 net income increased 9% to $432m on stronger-than-expected sales. Sales inched up 1% to $4.8bn, with 2% of organic growth partially offset by a 1% decline from negative currency translation. The Dublin-based conglomerate had forecast a Q1 sales drop of 3%. Eaton’s Hydraulics business grew sales by 7% to $587m, while operating profit jumped 46% $60m.
Dana Inc.’s Q1 net income rose 67% to $75m on new business with auto makers, greater demand for light trucks and improvement in various other business lines. The Ohio-based axle and powertrain supplier said higher sales were offset somewhat by higher transaction costs related to acquisitions
5/5 Bosnian supplier
Prevent is not planning a full takeover of German rival
Grammer, Prevent executive Christian Becker told German daily Handelsblatt. Automotive interiors maker Grammer had warned that the growing influence of Bosnia’s Hastor family, which owns Prevent and has a more than 20% stake in Grammer, has impacted business with major carmakers.
5/5 French supplier
Faurecia and Germany’s
ZF are to jointly develop interior and safety technologies for self-driving cars, dubbing it the “cockpit of the future.”Together, we can offer complete interior safety features to meet the future challenges which will allow the interior of the future to be safe, connected, versatile and predictive,” Faurecia CEO Patrick Koller.
3/5 UK manufacturing returned to growth in April with its purchasing managers’ index (PMI) rising to a three year-year high at 57.3, according to head of industrial manufacturing at
KPMG UK, Stephen Cooper. The PMI for the Eurozone reflected a similar story, with all but one of the eight nations recording highs. However, Cooper warned, the trend could change soon “as Brexit talks have the potential to muddy the waters.”
Kumho Asiana Group is seeking to block the use of Kumho logo by China-based
Doublestar Tyre which is poised to buy a 42% majority share of the South Korean tire maker. Citing “an unnamed official from Kumho Asiana Group”, the Korean news agency Pulse said the group “would not relinquish Kumho trademark rights to Doublestar if Kumho Tire creditors fail to come up with new terms that it can accept.”
Shin-Etsu silicones business has posted a 2.5% growth in operating income to Yen42.5bn (€347m) in the fiscal year ended 31 March. This is while the business’ sales declined 4.5% to Yen179bn compared to the previous year. In Japan, said Shin-Etsu, shipments of product applications for cosmetics and on-board automotive “continued to do well”. Globally, general purpose products were affected in the first half of the year by sluggish market prices. Shipments of functional products for the US, China and South East Asia remained firm.
JSR posted a 3.3% rise in elastomer sales to Yen180bn for its fiscal 2017 ended 31 March. Elastomers’ operating income rose 11% to Yen8.3m helped by a market recovery and sales expansion in second-half. The company also said that the second phase of its SSBR plant in Thailand began full-scale operation.
Michelin has started replacing its heavy truck tire range in the UK and Ireland with launch of its “all-new X Multi” tire line-up at the CV show on 26 April. The “next-generation” tires are claimed to deliver 15-20% more mileage than the current Michelin X MultiWay 3D series, at no extra cost. They are available in four key fitments: 315/70 R 22.5 multi-position and drive tires and 385/55 R 22.5 steer and trailer tires.
Triangle Tyre’s net profit dropped 2.6% year-on-year in the first quarter of 2017 to Yuan157 million (€21 million). The decline, said the company was due to force majeure factors, including natural disasters, impairment of assets and restructuring costs.
Possehl Group, which owns rubber machinery major HF, has reported “record” results with 50% rise in earnings before tax to €242 million on €3.9 billion sales. In its annual statement published in February, the German conglomerate said all its business segments were profitable, particularly the construction segment, in which it had invested “heavily”.
Ivory Coast was the fifth largest supplier of natural rubber to China over the first two months of 2017, reports Africa Commod. While still some way behind leaders Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia and Vietnam, the African country posted a 40% rise in sales to China in the first two months of 2017, including a 146% hike in February – helped by lower prices for NR.
Michelin is employing up to 250 people at its French sites in Cholet and La Roche-sur-Yon, according to a report by the French news website ouest-france. A recruitment campaign, said the report, will start 25 April and see 150 employed at Cholet and 100 at La Roche-sur-Yon. The new members will be working in production and maintenance and will replace those who will retire in the near future.
AG has outlined a new strategy for its Powertrain division, which will centre its focus on efficient combustion engine technology as well as hybrid and electric drive systems. Continental announced 25 March that as part of its new strategy and environmental campaign, it will spend an additional €300 million on its business with electric drives alone by 2021.
Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia are considering new curbs on natural rubber exports to stabilise falling prices, Malaysian news service The Star online has reported. The three countries’
International Tripartite Rubber Council last year agreed to to reduce exports by 700 kilotonnes. European butadiene spot prices plummeted Tuesday on bearish sentiment and the recent plunge in values in Asia, Platts has reported. While European domestic supply has been relatively tight during April amid the ongoing cracker maintenance season, the falls in Asia and the US have affected sentiment in Europe, sources said last week.
Liberia’s president Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf has suspended exports of unprocessed rubber from the country, Reuters reported 18 April. The move is intended to increase levels of NR processing in the West African country. In Bangkok, the Natural Rubber Policy Committee is to extend a 10-billion-baht loan programme for another year to help stabilise the rubber industry, Thailand’s Pattaya News has reported. During the meeting, Thai prime minister Gen Prayut instructed the committee to raise domestic demand for NR and cut export volumes. Thai NR consumption was targeted to reach 1.2 million tonnes/year.
GM said its factory in Venezuela has been “unexpectedly taken by the public authorities, preventing normal operations,” and threatened vigorous legal action within and outside of the country to defend its rights. The plant shutdown took place amid political turmoil which contributed to a 92% collapse in car sales in March.
19/4 US retreaders remain concerned over competition from low-priced Chinese truck and bus tires, which they feel only will increase after the
International Trade Commission voted 20 Feb not to impose countervailing and antidumping duties. “If this situation persists, the Chinese will just open the spigots full blast,” warned one US retreader. The United Steelworkers union has filed a complaint with the US Court of International Trade seeking a review of the International Trade Commission‘s recent negative determination in the ITC’s investigation of truck and bus tires from China.
Ceat is considering setting up a tire manufacturing plant and an IT “back-end set-up” in India’s Punjab, according to Money Control. Citing a tweet by Harsh Goenka, chairman of RPG Enterprises, makers of Ceat tires, the newspaper said Goenka has travelled to Punjab to woo investors. Also in India, The Economic Times has reported large gains for tire-makers’ stock as rubber prices fell to their lowest levels in 2017.
JK Tyre shares were up by nearly 8%, while
MRF also gained. Rubber prices have tumbled over 10 per cent since 1 Feb and are now around Rs139/kg said the report.
Sinopec Corp. has said that a fire in a warehouse at its Maoming petrochemical and refining complex in southern China has not affected production, according to Reuters. The fire broke out on 13 April in a synthetic rubber warehouse that the facility. The report did disclose details of the financial damage caused by the fire.
Yokohama Rubber will launch its first-ever brand of competitively priced passenger vehicle tires at European retail outlets in May, Nikkei has reported. Its newly acquired ATG’s agricultural tire brand will be extended to passenger car tires under a plan to double sales in the region within five years, said the Japanese news service.
A hearing on the Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing of
East West Copolymer LLC was scheduled to be held this week before the US Bankruptcy Court for the Middle District of Louisiana. The manufacturer of SBR and nitrile rubber filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection before the Middle District of Louisiana court 7 April.
Several amendments have been made to the proposed merger agreement between
DuPont, and its subsequent separation into three independent, publicly traded companies. The companies have agreed to extend the merger date to 31 Aug, subject to regulatory approvals. The deal was originally expected to be finalised by the end of 2016.
Momentive Performance Materials Inc. opened a new 20,000 square-foot R&D lab in Charlotte, North Carolina, to test and develop advanced compounds used in tire manufacturing. The company is investing about $3.5 million in the new lab, which will serve as a global hub for development of silane materials.
In the US,
Bridgestone Americas Inc. is marking the 60th anniversary of its
Bandag retreading business unit with a global campaign to ” unite the Bandag brand globally and position retreads as an innovative, sustainable business solution for fleet customers of any size.”
Wacker and the Brazilian silicone compounder
STC Silicones have entered an agreement on the co-branding of ready-to-use silicone compounds, they announced 12 April. Under the deal, STC can promote silicone compounds made from
Wacker raw materials, labelled ‘based on Elastosil’
Wenzel Industrie GmbH, part of the
Marangoni Group, has won Jungheinrich’s ‘best supplier 2016’ award for its supply of industrial tires in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Denmark. Marangoni Industrial Tyres S.r.l supplies solid tires from its factories in Italy and Sri Lanka.
Asia butadiene prices continued to fall at $1,800/tonne CFR (cost and freight) northeast Asia on 24 March, according to a 5 April report by ICIS. This represented a 40% drop since early February when it hit $3,000/tonne peak. According to the report, the Asia BD price drop tracked the “plummeting Chinese domestic BD price”, and could fall further on full inventories and slack demand. Tire makers have announced price hikes in Japan due to higher raw materials’ costs.
According to a 6 April report by Yomiuri Shimbun,
Bridgestone will be raising summer tire prices by 6% as of June.
Yokohama will also apply a 6% price rise on summer tires as of April, while Toyo’s 5.5% rise on summer and winter tires will start as of May.
Sumitomo Rubber Industries will also raise prices by 6% in June, while
Nihon Michelin is considering the move. The prices are on average for passenger car tires.
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