Leading wind turbine maker eyes global market

Updated: 2012-01-11 10:12


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BEIJING - Xinjiang Goldwind Science and Technology Co (Goldwind) has announced wind turbine sales to three new customers in North America -- Enel Green Power North America, Wind Energy Developers LLC, and Debenham Energy.

Upon completion of the projects, Goldwind, the world's largest direct-drive permanent magnetic wind turbine maker, will have 13 projects operating in California, Illinois, Iowa, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, and Rhode Island in the United States, in addition to Ecuador and Chile.

In all, Goldwind has over 200 megawatts (MW) of turbine sales and project acquisitions in place in its 18 months in the Americas.

"The US market is particularly competitive and to succeed there demonstrates any global company's ability to compete on an international scale, and we are pleased to see such promising results in such a short period of time," Wang Haibo, head of the Hong Kong-based Goldwind International, said Tuesday.

According to Kate Dusett, Goldwind USA's point person for logistics and sourcing, the company has been reliant on local sources of material to achieve its goals.

"We have worked with a variety of US companies to make our projects happen here," Dusett said. "With help from companies such as LM Wind Power, Broadwind Energy, The Timken Company, Maxwell Technologies and so many others, we've not only built high quality projects, but we've created over 400 US jobs in the process."

In recent years, Chinese wind turbine makers have eyed the world market due to a domestic surplus production capacity.

According to China Wind Energy Association (CWEA), China is able to produce 35GW wind turbines a year if the planned production capacities are put into operation in 80-odd turbine makers. But over the next five years, the Chinese domestic market can consume only about 15GW turbines a year under the renewable development objectives.

Zhao Liang with CWEA said Chinese wind turbines are quoted 20-30 percent lower than foreign counterparts in unit prices in the world market.

Zhao said while some Chinese wind turbine makers are forced to go global because of the increasingly ferocious domestic market competition, some are well matched with international counterparts in technology and services, and take the initiative to edge into the world market to improve their brands and seek greater development potential.

According to CWEA, Chinese wind turbine makers signed more turbine supply deals with foreign countries in 2011 than the total sum from 2007 to 2010.

"We have long strived to establish ourselves as a global company serving a variety of international markets," Wang said, adding that progress has been made in meeting that goal with sales in Pakistan, Africa, South America, Europe, Australia and other regions.