CSSC Wärtsilä Engine Co Ltd (CWEC), the joint venture company formed between Wärtsilä and China State Shipbuilding Corporation (CSSC), has formally opened its new production facilities located at Lingang, Shanghai. The opening ceremony took place on 9 January, and was attended by top executives from both Wärtsilä and CSSC.
The new 20,000 m2 production plant is the first in China capable of locally producing large-bore, medium speed diesel and dual-fuel (DF) engines. The plant will also manufacture medium-bore, medium speed diesel and DF engines. Wärtsilä 26, Wärtsilä 32, Wärtsilä 34DF, Wärtsilä 46F and Wärtsilä 46DF engines will be produced at the factory, which has a planned production capacity of 180 engines per year. CWEC has already booked orders for more than 70 engines and is focused on the cruise, ferry, LNG carrier, offshore, special vessel, and large container ship markets, all of which are strategic growth markets for the Chinese shipbuilding sector.
"This is an important day for China's shipbuilding sector as we now have local availability of both medium and large-bore Wärtsilä diesel and dual-fuel engines. Wärtsilä's extraordinary technological accomplishments and global reputation have been built on its proud history spanning more than 180 years. With our two companies now standing shoulder to shoulder behind this joint venture, we can anticipate great things for the future," said Mr Wu Qiang, President of CSSC.
In November 2016, a similar agreement was signed with Shanghai Waigaoqiao Shipbuilding (SWS), also a part of CSSC. Wärtsilä has successfully cooperated for a number of years with SWS, and this agreement is expected to build on this relationship. SWS is currently the largest commercial shipyard in China.
The ground-breaking ceremony for the factory took place in October, 2015, and already the first Wärtsilä engine has been delivered to the Shanghai Waigaoqia Shipyard (SWS). Currently 80 people are employed at the plant, and this number is expected to rise to 130 during 2017.
The joint venture was established in July, 2014 with CSSC holding 51% of the shares and Wärtsilä the remaining 49%.