Conti to Invest 150 million Euros in China Tyre Plant
Continental AG is to substantially expand its presence in China through the establishment of a new tyre manufacturing facility in the city of Hefei, Anhui province. Conti will invest a total of about 150 million euros into the project, and construction is scheduled to get underway in mid 2008. A date of early 2010 has been put forward for the start of tyre production. An appropriate investment plan for the project was agreed upon on October 28 and the company is currently in the process of obtaining the required permits from China’s central government.
“With this move, we are entering one of the world’s most dynamic tyre markets, following careful analysis and intensive preparation,” stressed Continental Executive Board chairman Manfred Wennemer in Hanover on October 28. “In addition to Automotive Systems and ContiTech the Passenger and Light Truck Tires division will thus have a production location in China and profit from the continuing positive development.”
During a two-year period of intensive study Continental examined more than 20 potential locations, with Hefei selected for its close proximity to China’s growing automotive industry and numerous global players. Anhui province, about 450 kilometres west of Shanghai, is coincidently the partner province of Germany’s Lower Saxony, home of Continental AG’s global headquarters. The new factory will produce about four million Continental brand passenger car tyres per year primarily for the Chinese OE market and will be fitted out with the latest production and environmental technology. Conti states that it will establish a qualification program and cooperate with the local university for the training of employees.