BOC in Singapore signed a contract for the supply of oxygen to the Taiyuan Iron and Steel Corp. (TISCO), located in the Shanxi province of north-central China. The contract calls for an investment of over US$80 million by BOC-TISCO, the joint venture between BOC and TISCO. BOC-TISCO will install two additional air separation units (ASUs) at TISCO's steel plant to increase the supply by 2,800 tonnes a day of oxygen, as well as significant quantities of nitrogen and argon. When the ASUs begin operating at the end of 2005, TISCO estimates that its current production of nearly 600,000 tonnes a year of crude stainless steel will rise to 900,000 tonnes.