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Anhui Conch is going global to boost output

(China Daily)

09:44, November 03, 2011

WUHU, Anhui - Anhui Conch Cement Co Ltd, China's biggest cement producer, plans to add 10 million tons to its annual capacity by 2015 through overseas expansion, by setting up factories of its own and acquiring international rivals weakened by the European debt crisis, a senior company official said.

Wang Jianchao, manager of Anhui Conch's foreign economic cooperation department, said his company, which currently has no overseas production, is engaged in a go-global strategy.

The Shanghai-listed company produced 110 million tons of cement in China last year, according to its annual report.

"Many cement plant owners in the eurozone want a quick bailout because they need cash to save their business, which was hit hard by the European debt crisis," Wang said, adding that his company is moving at the best time to build its overseas operation.

He declined to disclose the budget for strategy, but said the company is financially strong enough to expand.

Anhui Conch Cement began its overseas expansion in late June when it signed a Memorandum of Understanding to invest $2.35 billion in several Indonesian cement plants. Wang offered no details on the status of the proposed Indonesian projects, but he hinted that the Anhui Conch's first foreign factory may open elsewhere because opportunities in other countries are also being explored.

"Apart from Indonesia, we are in discussions with potential business partners in Mongolia, Central Asia and South America. It's hard to say whether our foreign production will operate in Indonesia first, because other foreign projects may proceed more smoothly," Wang said.

He added that the company will consider suitable investment opportunities wherever they occur and said that the main criteria are that they have a good resource supply and cement market, and mature production technology.

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