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Equipment manufacturing fuels new growth

Updated: 2014-11-06 07:36
By Song Mengxing (China Daily)

Located at the heart of the booming Pearl River Delta region, the Guangdong city of Foshan is a compelling destination for equipment manufacturers because of its solid industrial foundation and huge local demand.

Adding to the success of manufacturers is strong support and efficient services from the government, according to local entrepreneurs.

"Generally speaking, government officials in Foshan have a strong sense of serving businesses and are used to doing that," said Zhou Zhitong, chief of the Foshan Bureau of Commerce.

Andritz Group, an Austrian manufacturer, has operated in Foshan for 17 years.

"The local government is very proactive and supporting," said Thomas Schmitz, president of Andritz (China) Co headquartered in the city.

The company, which supplies equipment for the pulp and paper, hydroelectricity and metals industries, had difficulties when it planned to build new workshops in 2010.

The new facilities had to be built near its headquarters for efficient management, but the company had difficulty in finding land in the central district of Foshan.

"Local governments at all levels tried their best to help Andritz solve the problem," said Han Xiaoxing, advisor to the president of the company.

They have helped Andritz find three new sites since 2011, all near the company's headquarters. Its manufacturing area in Foshan has tripled.

The governments in Foshan are more efficient and service-oriented compared with some other cities in China, said Han.

At an entrepreneurs gathering in Foshan on June 14, Schmitz remarked that he was very pleased to help attract other foreign companies to invest in the city.

"We enjoy very good support from and cooperation with the local governments," said Schmitz.

Besides overseas companies, local manufacturers have also received great support from the governments in Foshan.

"We think the local governments in Foshan attach great importance to the development of equipment manufacturing industry and they help us a lot," said Zhen Ronghui, CEO of Guangdong Yizumi Precision Machinery Co.

Main products of Yizumi Co include injection molding machines for manufacturing plastic products and die casting machines for producing metal components in automobiles.

Complete chain

Located near Guangzhou, Hong Kong and Macao, Foshan has developed equipment manufacturing for decades and boasts a complete demand and supply chain.

There were more than 7,500 advanced equipment manufacturers in the city by 2013.

"Equipment manufacturing in Foshan is complete in a diverse range," said Zhen of Yizumi.

Yizumi purchases most of its raw materials, including 50-ton casts, from other manufacturers in the city.

"The location provides good access to a very wide range of local suppliers, which are crucial to our business. It's also a close location to many of our key customers in the pulp and paper area," said Schimtz of Andritz.

Before renowned as a manufacturing base for home appliances, furniture, ceramics and plastic products, Foshan has now placed more emphasis on making equipment used by consumer goods producers.

With policies and planning by the local government, equipment manufacturing is now a pillar industry in the city.

Local statistics show Foshan's equipment manufacturers made products valued at more than 400 billion yuan ($65.4 billion) in 2013, about 24 percent of the total industrial output in the city.

The Guangdong provincial government announced in May that it would set up an advanced equipment manufacturing zone on the west bank of the Pearl River and make Guangdong a world-class equipment manufacturing hub.

Local officials said Foshan will play a leading role in the zone that includes five cities in Guangdong.

Total industrial output in Foshan's equipment manufacturing industry is projected to reach 1 trillion yuan by 2020.

 Equipment manufacturing fuels new growth

The Yizumi Precision Machinery Co factory, which supplies plastic injection molding and die casting machines to meet local demand and beyond.


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