Wärtsilä inaugurates Chinese CPP factory

29 Jun 2011
The new CP propeller plant

The new CP propeller plant

Wärtsilä CME Zhenjiang Propeller, the joint venture company of Wärtsilä and Zhenjiang CME, has formally inaugurated its new €12 million CP propeller plant in Zhenjiang, China, first announced in October 2010.

The company says that about 20% of newbuild vessels use CP propellers of the type manufactured in the new factory. While most of the propellers will be sold to the rapidly growing Chinese market, significant potential is also foreseen in other global markets, with about 30% of production expected to go for export.

The new factory provides the capability to assemble and machine all sizes of controllable pitch propellers. The bronze castings are supplied from an existing foundry located in the company's fixed pitch propeller factory. Wärtsilä is able to offer a wide range of CP propellers with an output from 1.5MW to 60MW. The majority of the new factory's manufacturing equipment was transferred from the Wärtsilä factory in Drunen, the Netherlands, where production ceased in 2010.

Wärtsilä CME Zhenjiang Propeller is the first company in China to manufacture Wärtsilä-designed hydraulically operated CP propellers. The first deliveries from the new factory are planned to take place later this year. Wärtsilä CP Propellers are claimed to offer high efficiency and manoeuvrability and are suitable for ships requiring frequent port calls. 

"Most ships are today built in Asian shipyards, and China has emerged as the world's primary shipbuilding nation. We have taken consistent steps to broaden our presence and production capacity in China, close to our marine customers. The relocation of our Ship Power management team to offices in Shanghai in 2008 further emphasises Wärtsilä's commitment to China and the Asian markets," said Ole Johansson, president & CEO of Wärtsilä Corporation, at the inauguration event in Zhenjiang.

"The main goal of China's shipbuilding sector over the coming five years is to vigorously develop the quality and local availability of its marine and offshore equipment. As one of the largest shipbuilding groups in China, CSSC looks forward to a successful and comprehensive strategic cooperation with Wärtsilä, with the inauguration of this new CPP production unit of Wärtsilä CME Zhenjiang Propeller Co. Ltd as a promising starting point," says Mr Wu Qiang, vice president of CSSC.

The agreement to manufacture controllable pitch propellers was signed between Wärtsilä and Zhenjiang CME, a subsidiary of China State Shipbuilding Corporation (CSSC), in October 2010. The joint venture company, Wärtsilä CME Zhenjiang Propeller, was established in 2004 between Wärtsilä, with a 55% share, and Zhenjiang CME with 45%. The joint venture has grown rapidly, to the point that it is now the biggest manufacturer and supplier of FP propellers in China, and one of the biggest anywhere.

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