The Timken Company has announced an agreement with Chinese heavy equipment manufacturer Xiangtan Electric Manufacturing Co., Ltd. (XEMC) to establish a joint venture in China to manufacture ultra-large-bore bearings for main rotor shafts of multi-megawatt wind turbines for the Chinese wind energy market.
The joint venture is expected to contribute to China's goal of generating 30 million kilowatts of power from wind energy systems by 2020, providing a renewable energy source for China's rapidly expanding economy.
The joint venture will build a new $38 million facility in Xiangtan, located in China's Hunan province, to collaborate on the manufacture of main-shaft bearings for wind turbines. Timken and XEMC expect to employ more than 110 people in the joint venture. Construction of the new facility is scheduled to begin in 2008.
The agreement was unveiled today in Beijing at a ceremony attended by China's Ministry of Commerce Vice-Minister, Jiang Zeng Wei, and U.S. Secretary of Commerce Carlos M. Gutierrez, who is visiting China to encourage bilateral trade and investment that will strengthen the U.S. and Chinese economies.
"Timken's partnership in China will provide $100 million in exports, while also helping China expand alternative energy, wind power, which helps the planet," said U.S. Secretary of Commerce Carlos M. Gutierrez.
Timken power transmission and friction management solutions are particularly well-suited to improving the performance, durability and reliability of wind turbine systems. By combining Timken's alloy steel expertise, power-transmission design and precision manufacturing capabilities with XEMC's leadership in heavy-equipment manufacturing in the Chinese market, the joint venture will be well-positioned to meet the needs of China's rapidly growing wind energy industry. Timken will have an ownership stake of 80 percent in the joint venture.
"Timken has continued to invest heavily in China since entering this country in 1992, and the joint venture with XEMC is the latest example of our commitment to meet the needs of Chinese customers as they participate in one of the most important economic expansions the world has ever witnessed," said Roger Lindsay, Timken's senior vice president for Asia. "We believe our collaboration with XEMC will contribute to Chinese economic growth while also advancing the use of sustainable energy to the benefit of us all."
In addition to Timken's participation in the wind energy industry, the company has developed a wide range of products that contribute to sustainability by improving the operating efficiency and power density of diverse types of machinery.