Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Training center

FACING heated market competition and expanding dealer network, BMW AG yesterday opened its biggest training center in Asia.

The BMW Training Center Shanghai has 100 million yuan (US$14.6 million) invested in the first phase.

Monday, May 11, 2009

rline group confirms order cut

CHINA'S Hainan Airlines Group (HNA) confirmed yesterday that it halved its order of ERJ-145 jets from the Harbin Embraer Aircraft Industry Company to 25 planes.

Zheng Yang, an official with HNA responsible for Grand China Express, HNA's core business, said shrinking demand had caused the cut.

He said Harbin Embraer had agreed to the order change. Harbin Embraer, a joint venture among Empresa Brasileira de Aeronautica SA (Embraer), Harbin Aircraft Industry Group Co and Hafei Aviation Industry Co had delivered 12 jets to HNA as of April 30.

It would deliver the rest by 2011, instead of 2010, Zheng said. HNA is China's fourth-largest carrier.

New boss at PBOC's Shanghai operation

ZHANG Xin has been named the new deputy director of the Shanghai headquarters of the People's Bank of China, the central bank said yesterday.

He will also head the bank's Shanghai branch.

He was previously head of the financial stability bureau under the central bank. His predecessor, Hu Pingxi, has moved to the Shanghai Rural Commercial Bank as chairman.

Zhang's move from Beijing to Shanghai is seen as a means to support the build-up of Shanghai as a major world financial center by 2020, industry watchers said.

Zhang, 40, who graduated from the graduate department of the central bank in 1989 and gained a PhD in finance from Columbia University in 1996, worked for Merrill Lynch and the World Bank in the late 1990s. He came back to China and joined the China Securities Regulatory Commission in 2000.

He became deputy head of the financial stability bureau in May 2005.

The central bank set up its Shanghai headquarters in March 2006 to enhance Shanghai's position in the international financial market.

The State Council earlier this year issued guidelines with the aim of making Shanghai a leading financial and shipping center by 2020.

Wang sets out the road to recovery

CHINESE Vice Premier Wang Qishan, in an article in yesterday's Financial Times, says the economy will get worse before it gets better.

The vice premier said financial stability would be aided by keeping exchange rates stable through exchange-rate policy coordination.

He rejected protectionism, saying "it is vital unequivocally to reject protectionism of all kinds."

Wang said China would continue with its "proactive fiscal policy and moderately easy monetary policy to ensure sound and steady growth of our economy, and in so doing contribute to the recovery of the global economy."

Joint Investment For Sichuan Car Plant

CHINA First Automobile Works and Europe's auto giant Volkswagen AG said yesterday that they would jointly invest 5 billion yuan (US$733 million) to build an auto plant in Chengdu, capital of southwest China's Sichuan Province.

The plant is expected to create 4,500 jobs. It will have a planned annual output of 150,000 and will make the Volkswagen Jetta.

The firms didn't disclose how the investment would be divided.

Xu Jianyi, CFAW's general manager, said the new investment was made in an effort to support the reconstruction of earthquake-hit Sichuan.

Volkswagen China CEO Winfried Vahland said the Chengdu plant would serve as an important production base to achieve its target of 2 million sales in China by 2018.

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