Tile maker Oran Vanich eyes 10% growth but fears ban on asbestos

Corporate June 19, 2012 00:00

By Watcharapong Thongrung
The Na

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Major roof-tile manufacturer Oran Vanich has set a sales-growth target of 10 per cent this year, from sales of about Bt2.2 billion last year, on rising demand from people repairing their houses after last year's flood and the increase in farmers' income.


Uran Kleosakul, managing director of Oran Vanich Roof Tiles Co, said yesterday that it was aiming to grow sales by 10 per cent every year. This goal can be achieved if the government does not impose a ban on all types of asbestos for industrial use.
The company claims a 40-per-cent domestic market share in Roman tiles, small corrugated tiles, sideboards and flat sheet tiles. The main production material is Portland cement and its major products are roof tiles and flat sheet tiles, which have chrysotile, or white asbestos, as a component. 
Some international organisations have pressured Thailand to impose a ban on the use of asbestos, citing its negative health effects.
Uran said he would like the government to study the facts about asbestos carefully. If it decides to ban all types of asbestos, this may have seriously affects on the industrial sectors and related parties. According to Uran, chrysotile is different from amphibole, the other main type of asbestos. 
The total value of roof-tile market in Thailand is about Bt10 billion. 
Oran Vanich has five tile factories, in Samut Prakan, Chachoengsao, Ayutthaya, Ratchaburi and Nakhon Ratchasima, and more than 1,000 workers. 
Yesterday the company took the press on a tour of its plant in Samut Prakan to show its production process. Pornkit Kleosakul, manager of the factory in Bang Phli district, said the company had a strict health and safety policy.