The world's No.1 automotive supplier, Bosch, unveiled plans
yesterday to sink 160 million euros (US$203 million) into its car
parts plants in Changsha and Suzhou, in a drive to increase
Company bosses said the investment was only the tip of the
iceberg, with plans to invest a total of 620 million euros (US$787
million) in China over the next two years.
The German industrial giant will pump 60 million euros (US$76
million) into its Changsha plant, the company's largest investment
in central China.
The expansion will make the Changsha site Bosch's Energy and
Body Systems Division's main base in the country.
Meanwhile, a total investment of 100 million euros (US$127
million) over the next two years, will see the workforce at the
company's Suzhou site grow from 160 to 1,000 by 2008.
The Changsha plant already covers the entire sector of vehicle
electrical systems from development to manufacture and
distribution, while the Suzhou site manufactures a range of Bosch
automotive electronic components including airbag control units,
engine management units for diesel engines and various other
"The latest expansions are part of our plan to invest a further
620 million euros (US$787 million) in China between 2006 and 2008,"
said Bosch board member Rudolf Colm. "Through continuous investment
and localization we will introduce the most advanced technologies
and manufacturing know-how to China and hence support China's need
for global industrial competitiveness, environmental protection and
Up until 2005 Bosch had invested around 620 million euros
(US$787 million) in its Chinese bases. And the past five years
alone have seen the number of Bosch manufacturing facilities
double, rising from 10 to 20.
Last year saw sales of 1.2 billion euros (US$1.53 billion) in
China, a 15 percent increase from 2004.
Today all of Bosch's business sectors operate in China, with
plants producing everything from automotive, industrial technology
and building technology to consumer goods.
The company also owns 14 subsidiaries, six trading companies and
has invested in six more joint ventures in China.
Friday's announcement follows Bosch's opening of a 200 million
euro (US$254 million) development and manufacturing facility in
Wuxi, Jiangsu Province, in November last year.
"Our aim is to develop more and more products in China that are
tailored to the requirements of our local customers," said Dr.
Volkmar Denner, board member responsible for automotive electronics
and energy and body systems.
In order to meet the growing customer demand, the company also
aims to increase its presence in the Chinese market.
"Presently China accounts for 3 percent of our global market.
Our target is to increase that to 5 percent by 2008," said
He added that in 2008 China will surpass Japan, becoming the
company's largest market in Asia.
While by 2006 China is expected to become the world's third
largest auto producer, surpassing Germany and following only the US
(China Daily May 20, 2006)