Wind turbine manufacturer Gamesa (Madrid, Spain) announced on May 10 that it has broken ground on its fifth manufacturing plant in China, in the city of Da’an in the province of Jilin (northwest China), one of the country’s leading wind energy regions. The factory, scheduled to begin operating in 2011, will manufacture G8X-2.0 MW wind turbines and have a production capacity of 500 MW per year.
Gamesa's presence in China dates to 2000, though it is in the past five years that the company has stepped up expansion of its manufacturing base and wind farm development business there. In 2009, China accounted for 15 percent of the total wind energy sold worldwide.
“Gamesa is one of the main investors in the wind power industry in China. The groundbreaking on our new facility strengthens Gamesa's global position and it represents a great opportunity to keep involving in the China wind industry expansion and serving our clients in the province that the government has targeted to have the highest wind power capacity in all of China”, said Jorge Calvet, chairman of Gamesa.
The company currently has four manufacturing plants (for blades, generators, and nacelle and gearbox assembly) in the province of Tianjin, which employ 1,000 people. The company has installed a total of 2,000 of its Gamesa G5X-850 kW turbines in China in more than 60 locations. It began industrial production of the Gamesa G8X-2.0 MW model in 2010; adding a total of 400 MW of new capacity will bring its total manufacturing capacity in China to 1,000 MW per year. Gamesa’s manufacturing capacity in China will rise to 1,500 MW in one year.
Gamesa has a pipeline of Chinese wind farm projects totalling 2,400 MW at varying stages of development. In the past year, the company has been involved in the wind industry expansion encouraged by the Chinese government and its main customers, signing agreements with local companies to jointly develop wind farms with total capacity of more than 700 MW in the Chinese provinces that are most promising for the potential growth of wind energy.