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SOEs gain foreign input
Deals were sealed yesterday to set up two Sino-foreign joint ventures in Beijing - the latest show of faith by overseas investors in the restructuring of the country's State-owned enterprises (SOEs).
Republic of Korea (ROK) conglomerate Hyundai led the way with its partnership with Beijing Automobile Investment Co Ltd.
Civic leaders also hailed the agreement to establish a Sino-Japanese joint venture involving digital-control machine tools.
Beijing's Vice-Mayor Liu Haiyan said Sino-foreign co-operation in the SOE sector could help the capital city optimize its industrial structure and sharpen the competitive edge of those enterprises after market reform.
"The municipal government especially welcomes overseas investors to pool capital and transfer technology to those key SOEs in Beijing that are relatively strong and have huge market potential," said Liu.
Beijing No 1 Machine Tool Factory (BYJC), one of China's leading machinery companies, joined hands with Japanese OKUMA to set up a digital-control machine tool manufacturing base, which will be the largest in China.
Located in Beijing Shunyi Linhe Industrial Development Zone, the BYJC-OKUMA (Beijing) Machine Tool Co Ltd will use 330 million yuan (US$39.76 million) and start operation next October.
The manufacturing capacity and annual sales volume of the Sino-Japanese joint venture are expected to reach 1,000 sets and 800 million yuan (US$96.39 million) respectively, according to Wang Jisheng, chairman of the board of the new company.
"After nearly 50 years' development and as a large-scale SOE, BYJC boasts advantages in sales and after-sales service networks, property and human resources, as well as precious invisible value in the machine tool industry," said Wang.
As the foreign partner, OKUMA will transfer its internationally advanced FMS production lines and IT-Plaza intellectual management system to the joint venture to improve its products, manufacturing and logistics.
Eyeing the huge market potential in China and the opportunities brought about by the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, ROK-based Hyundai has also achieved its goal of penetrating the capital market.
Beijing Hyundai was officially established yesterday and the first Sonata car, developed by Hyundai, is expected to be launched next month.
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