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Bosch Plans Massive Growth in China
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The world's top automotive supplier, Bosch, plans to sink 160 million euros (US$203 million) into its car parts plants in Changsha and Suzhou, China Daily reported Saturday.

The newspaper quoted the company bosses as saying on Friday that 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.

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.

"Through continuous investment and localization we will introduce the most advanced technologies and manufacturing know-how to China," China Daily quoted Bosch board member RudolfColm.

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.

"Presently China accounts for three percent of our global market. Our target is to increase that to five percent by 2008," said Colm, adding that in 2008 China will surpass Japan, becoming the company's largest market in Asia.

(Xinhua News Agency May 20, 2006)

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