Modern agricultural machinery for China
LEMKEN opens facility in the Middle Kingdom
China, the world's largest economy and, with 1.4 billion people, its most populous nation, is one of the most important growth markets in the agricultural machinery sector. Recognising the necessity to increase agricultural yields by using efficient agricultural machinery, the Chinese government has been offering relevant subsidies, providing a sufficient incentive for LEMKEN to invest in a Chinese production facility. Our assembly plant in Qingdao was officially opened on 18 June in a ceremony attended by numerous guests.
LEMKEN has already been active on the Chinese market since 1995, initially through cooperations with local companies until we established our own distribution company in 2009. Finally, in 2012, we ventured one step further and decided to build our own assembly plant, encouraged by the investment aids offered by the Chinese government to farmers buying modern, locally manufactured agricultural machinery. LEMKEN invested more than 9 million euros in our plant in Qingdao, on China's east coast. The city of Qingdao has historic links to Germany and is home to one of China's largest container ports.
The new facility has a total floor space of 6,500 m2 and currently employs 36 staff in production, sales and administration. It comprises manufacturing halls, an administrative wing and a showroom. The plant is used for the final assembly of state-of-the-art cultivators, compact disc harrows and mounted reversible ploughs for the Chinese market using components manufactured in Alpen.
About 300 guests from across China accepted our invitation to the official opening of LEMKEN Agricultural Machinery (Qingdao) Co., Ltd, among them the chairmen of the authorities responsible for automation in agriculture and trade in agricultural machinery, university representatives, numerous dealers and major customers. As the number eight is considered lucky in Chinese culture, the official part of the event began at 9:28 am on the dot with a welcome speech by LEMKEN's managing director, Anthony van der Ley. Shiqing Ma, chairman of the Chinese automation authority, highlighted the significance of modern agricultural machinery for increasing agricultural yields and thus food security in his speech. Peter Zhao, managing director of LEMKEN's Chinese subsidiary in Qingdao, pointed out LEMKEN's positive business outlook in China, given current growth rates of 50% annually. He emphasised that LEMKEN is planning to introduce a range of other products to the Chinese market in order to increase agricultural efficiency and intends to expand its service and sales network.
The programme also included a lion dance, a traditional part of any major event in China that is considered to bring luck and safety. However, before the actual dance could start, LEMKEN representatives carefully had to draw the lion's eyes in a solemn ceremony to awaken the beast to life. Once the symbolic ribbon had been cut, guests were given a tour of the facility, during which employees provided explanations and practical demonstrations of the high production standards at their workstations. The programme of the official opening concluded with an exhibition of agricultural implements on the plant grounds.
On the following day, the experts among our guests were given the opportunity to see LEMKEN implements in action on the field and to gain a first-hand impression of their outstanding quality of work. This demonstration included not only implements assembled in Qingdao, but also crop protection and seedbed technology from our German production.
Your candidate as Machine of the year
Azurit 9 - The innovation of single-seed drilling
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