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MAN Diesel & Turbo, world market leader for large diesel engines used in ships and power stations, is playing an important role in the effort by Chinese shipping companies to meet new global standards to reduce emission and increase efficiency.
"About 75 percent or more of Chinese ships are equipped with main engines from MAN," said Stephan Timmermann, executive board member of MAN Diesel & Turbo SE responsible for marine systems and after sales services.
Hou Liping, chief engineer and deputy managing director at COSCO Container Lines Co Ltd, said the subsidiary of COSCO Group "now has 106 vessels, 99 of them equipped with MAN main engines. Only seven use different engine brands in our entire fleet."
The cooperation between COSCO and MAN can be traced all the way back to 1964. As the global economy and industrial environment changed, the two companies have continued their close relationship, especially in view of even stricter environmental regulations.
"As one of the world's leading manufacturers of large-bore diesel engines and one of the three leading suppliers of turbo machinery, a central concern of MAN is protection of the environment," Timmermann said.
Every year both MAN and COSCO issue a sustainability report in which the two industry giants report their performance in the social responsibilities to their shareholders and the public.
Rudolf Diesel developed the first diesel engine in the years 1893-1897 in Augsburg, Germany. "Our investments in the R&D area have always been above the industry average," said Timmermann.
Apart from its long-standing research, MAN is also proud of its strong after sales business under the brand MAN PrimeServ, which has more than 110 service centers worldwide.
"Green technology is of utmost importance," he said. "COSCO being our biggest customer in China, we have to offer our technical expertise so they can become more environmentally friendly.
"Our local PrimeServ hubs provide a whole range of green technology product. We also have twelve PrimeServ Academies worldwide where we offer not only technical but also green soft-skill training."
Hou from COSCO said: "we have retrofitted our old vessels with the slide fuel valves and Alpha Lubricators from MAN PrimeServ in the last few years. With these green technologies, we have great performance in energy conservation and emission reduction. We will continue to cooperate with MAN PrimeServ to retrofit our vessels, and the benefits have been visible in just a short period."
To further strengthen the company's green efforts, Timmermann said: "We recently founded a new brand - MAN PrimeServ Green".
Many vessels now run at slower speeds to lower emissions and save costs.
Hou said "most vessels worked at 22 or 23 knots before, but now we have reduced the speed to only 17 or 18 knots or even lower".
"A 10,000 twenty foot equivalent unit container vessel consumes around 240 tons of fuel a day at design speed. So if you run at 19 knots, that's 160 tons per day - you can see the big difference."
According to Hou, with MAN's technology, engines can work at only 15 or even 10 percent of their original horsepower. "This is great technology," said Hou.
Of MAN's total revenues, about 20 percent generated in China, the single biggest market by country.
"Since China today is the world's biggest shipbuilding nation - starting in 2011 - it is an extremely important market for us," said Timmermann.
"MAN strives to become as local as possible," he added. "In 2012 we opened two new MAN PrimeServ hubs in Dalian and Zhoushan."
"The next two sites will be inland in China, and the planning on a new logistics center in Lingang area, an offshore new zone in Shanghai , is underway," he said. MAN currently has offices in Shanghai, Beijing, Dalian, Changzhou, Shenzhen, Fuzhou and Zhoushan that together employ about 700 professionals. "The Chinese market offers enormous prospects for us - also in terms of green technology," said Timmermann.
Hou said that "such a strong partnership between our two companies means even in these challenging times we are able to go through rough waters and will always reach a safe harbor".
(China Daily 11/23/2012 page17)