Hankook breaks ground on 3rd Chinese plant
Last November, Hankook Tire signed a US$954 million investment agreement to build an 11.5 million tyre per annum factory in Liang Jiang Xin Qu, Southwest China. The plant is scheduled to start operation in August 2012 and build up to an output of 4,500 truck and bus radials and 30,000 passenger car radials per day by the end of 2015; on May 18, 2011, a groundbreaking ceremony was held for this third Hankook Tire factory in China. Senior company management including vice-chairman and CEO Seung Hwa Suh, CMO Hyun Shick Cho and Hankook Tire China COO Ki Yeul Huh joined some 180 government officials from Chongqing region for the ceremony at the factory site.
“On May 18th 1997, Hankook Tire’s first factory production lines in China was completed,” stated Seung Hwa Suh during the proceedings. “This was the day when we started manufacturing the first Chinese Hankook Tire brand products. Now, we have achieved about 20 per cent market share of passenger car tyres in China and this would not have been possible without the customers’ full trust and support to our company quality. We decided to build the third Chinese plant in the Liangjiang New Area since it is the economic centre and a leader in western China. The new plant will help Hankook Tire blend into western China and further consolidate and expand its advantage in the China market. We appreciate the great support from Chongqing Municipal government and the Liangjiang New Area administration committee.”
The Chongqing region’s automotive industry is grow rapidly and the Chongqing Yufu Industrial Park, where Hankook’s new factory is being built, has been designated the “100-billion-level Auto City.” Construction of the 30 square kilometre industrial park, which is expected to annually produce more than RMB 100 billion (£95 billion) worth of vehicles – two million in total – and automotive components per annum, began on May 5. Hankook notes the Chongquing government and Liangjiang New Area have been “very supportive” of its decision to build the 500,000 square metre Liang Jiang Xin Qu factory. Qifan Huang, mayor and Communist Party deputy of Chongqing stated in a letter that “we welcome Hankook Tire’s settlement in Liangjiang New Area. The huge production capacity of Hankook Tire’s Chongqing plant will promote Chongqing to be the biggest tyre production base in western China and gradually improve the automotive industry supply chain of the Auto City. It will also play an active role in promoting and strengthening economic communication between China and Korea.”