Construction of the first phase of the Hankook Tire factory, with an investment of $278 million, was completed in Chongqing's Liangjiang New Area in 2010, and once all its four phases are completed and the factory starts operation, it is expected to have the largest output capacity of all of the company's seven factories around the world.
The project's second phase - a passenger car tire production line with total investment of $300 million - is expected to start operation by the end of 2014, and Zhang Menggen, president of the Chongqing factory, said that the production line will have a daily output capacity of 15,000 tires, with an annual output value of 1.5 billion yuan ($246.15 million).
Zhang also said tires produced on the line will mainly be sold to adjacent automobile and mobile parts companies in Chongqing and neighboring areas. However, the factory will aim to expand its business to the central and western China markets.
The Chongqing Liangjiang New Area, located inland, has comparative advantages that coastal cities do not enjoy, and this is of special significance as China's industry is shifting to the western part of the country. Zhang said that Chongqing has unique geographical advantages, with an expanding transportation network related to logistics and shipment businesses, and he added that Liangjiang also enjoys many preferential policies as a national-level development area.
The low costs for a variety of services also attract international companies to invest in the area, and statistics from the management committee show that the cost of water, electricity, natural gas, land, and labor resources is only one sixth of the cost in the coastal areas. In addition, production and construction costs are also lower.
Li Xiuri, director of the board of Hankook Tire China Ltd, said another major factor in the company's decision to come to the area - in addition to the potential of the Liangjiang New Area - was the Chongqing government's aim of opening to the outside world.
Chongqing lies at the convergence of the Yangtze and Jialing rivers.