Granitifiandre's new German plant was inaugurated in the presence of Brandenburg Premier Matthias Platzeck, the mayor of Vetschau, Alex Mueller, and Granitifiandre’s top executives. The Italian company is a global leader in the production and sales of high quality impervious unglazed stone tiles, listed in the Star division of the Italian Stock Exchange.

The new plant features a surface area of 75,000 sqare meters, and a production capacity of 6 million square meters of tiles.

Granitifiandre invested 50 million euro in the construction of the new plant, with 35 percent of the financing coming from the Brandenburg local authorities.

The Vetschau plant, which will employ around 100 when fully operational, will significantly improve the logistics of the German and East European market and allow the production of 6 million square meters of unglazed stone tiles from the year 2005, doubling Granitifiandre's current production capacity, according to the company.

An agreement was also signed with Porcelaingres, a company controlled by Granitifiandre, and First Rail Estate to supply paving as part of an order from German Rail (Deutsche Bahn AG) for the reconstruction of 1,114 railway stations.

The accord, which follows another recent agreement in Germany with Villeroy&Boch, will run for several years and includes an option to supply Porcelaingres material for a further 1,000 stations (at an average of 500 square meters per station).