Elevator firm Otis plans to invest an additional $100 million to triple its Tianjin plant's capacity by 2012, sources from the company told China Daily.
The plant, located in the Tianjin Economic Development Area (TEDA), now has an annual production capacity of 50,000 machines and 20,000 elevators.
Otis accounts for 27 percent of the global elevator and escalator market, and is focusing its business on China, where it devotes most of its production capacity to domestic consumption, Otis Elevator Investment (China) Co Ltd President Lindsay Harvey said.
"About 10 percent of the TEDA plant output is for the Asian market outside China, and the proportion will drop, in terms of percentage, gradually," Harvey said.
Otis' TEDA plant would have a new automatic production line, manufacturing high-rise elevators.
The technologies for producing high-rise elevators used at the TEDA plant were introduced from Otis Japan through a joint venture between Otis' China and Japan branches.
China and the Middle East are two major markets for high-rise elevators, with China's market size reaching 3,000 units per year, Harvey said.
The firm considers China a strategically important market that is now maturing into both a huge consumption market and an efficient manufacturing base.
Although the Chinese government is sparing no efforts to restrain speculative investment in the housing sector, the country's urbanization campaign is still fueling the elevator and escalator market's growth. And Otis is trying to invest according to the domestic market's growth trends, Harvey said.
The company is cultivating investment expansion plans in Chongqing, Guangzhou, Suzhou and Northeast China, Harvey added.
By diversifying investment locations, Otis seeks to balance the load in line with market sites.