Fuyao commits to $1b US investment

Updated: 2016-10-11 10:28


  Comments() Print Mail Large Medium  Small

Fuyao commits to $1b US investment

A worker carries a windshield after inspecting it for flaws at the Fuyao Glass America plant in Moraine, Ohio. [Photo/AP]

Chinese investments in the United States automotive industry continues to grow with a subsidiary of Fuyao Glass Industry Group, the world's leading automotive glass manufacturing company, planning to invest $1 billion in facilities there.

Fuyao celebrated the grand opening of its newest US plant in Moraine, Ohio, on Friday, and also unveiled plans to transform a building in Plymouth, Michigan, into an automotive glass plant and research and development center.

"Today's grand opening in Moraine is the culmination of a monumental undertaking by Fuyao and our partners," Chairman Cho Tak Wong of Fuyao said in a statement. "We are proud of our work in Ohio, in the heart of the US auto corridor, and are highly committed to supporting the growth of the North American automotive market," he said.

Upon completion, the 47-hectare Moraine facility, which is housed in a former General Motors' assembly plant near Dayton, Ohio, will be the largest glass fabrication plant in the world with the capacity to produce 4 million automotive car sets and 4 million automotive replacement glass windshields each year. Currently employing 2,000, Fuyao expects this to grow to 2,300-2,500 by the end of 2017.

In the Detroit suburb of Plymouth, Fuyao will remodel a 4.9-hectare plant and expects to create about 450 jobs there within two years and about 950 within three years as it consolidates research and development operations, said John Buzuvis, community development director for Plymouth.

The Plymouth plant will be used for the final processing of automotive glass, such as windshields, from Fuyao plants in Ohio and Canada.

"Fuyao started its American journey in Michigan in 2009, near Detroit. There are a lot of great automotive companies coming from China to North America. They recognize that the center of the North American automotive industry, and the greatest concentration of automotive talent, is in Michigan. (The state) is a place these Chinese automotive players need to be as they enter the US," Brian Connors, executive director of the Michigan-China Innovation Center in Detroit said in an email.

"(This is) another example of a Chinese company that is eager to expand, invest more and create new jobs and opportunities in our region, after once building a footprint in southeast Michigan," Jerry Xu, president of the Detroit Chinese Business Association said in an email.

Connors is hopeful that Chinese investment in Michigan's auto sector can be duplicated in other segments of the state's economy.

"As more Chinese companies find success and happiness in Michigan, they will tell their friends, and more may wish to come. Already we're seeing great Chinese investments in insurance, education, real estate, and other sectors," Connors said.

"Fuyao's goal is to provide the highest-quality products and outstanding service to our customers," said John Gauthier, president of Fuyao Glass America said.