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Irish building materials company Kingspan is spending €200 million ($213m) to construct a manufacturing centre in Ukraine and create more than 600 jobs.
The company will make advanced insulation and district heating products that are the backbone of net-zero carbon buildings.
Kingspan, an insulation and building materials conglomerate with a presence in more than 70 countries, said its Building Technology Campus will be a state-of-the-art facility to meet growing demand for green, energy-efficient buildings.
On April 5, Kingspan announced that it was pulling out from Russia and had divested its operations to local management.
Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba welcomed Kingspan’s announcement to invest and help create what he called a modern and innovative economy with urban development expertise and green technologies.
“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 Zelenskyy’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’s Building Technology Campus will manufacture the advanced insulation products that are a central plank for global climate-change efforts. Their products help enable net-zero carbon buildings to exist.
Kingspan Group's chief executive, Gene Murtagh, explained the investment.
“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,” he said.
“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.
“The ambition is for the development process to begin immediately — subject to appropriate security conditions — with the facility expected to be fully complete within five years.”
Kingspan has appointed a project team to identify a suitable site, which is expected to be in the west of the country.