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Maanshan

Situated 42km southwest of Nanjing and about 30km north of Wuhu, on the eastern edge of Anhui province, Maanshan is a green and scenic city situated on the south bank of the Yangtze, surrounded by hills and encircling a lake. It takes only three hours to travel to Shanghai by expressway and 40 minutes to Nanjing’s Lukou International Airport.

Maanshan is rich in iron resources, an important source of supply for Maanshan Iron and Steel Corporation (also known as Magang). China’s west-east natural gas pipeline passes through the city, providing the region with an abundant and clean source of energy.

Despite the presence of Magang, Maanshan does not feel particularly prosperous and its appearance has not changed drastically in recent years. However, living standards have improved and the Huashan area, where the city government building is located, is bustling. Hunan Road, in the middle of the downtown area, is the city’s busiest commercial area.

In addition to iron and steel, other local industries include automobile parts, biochemicals, paper-making, food and apparel. As of January 2008, the city had more than 150 FIEs, of which 36 were newcomers in 2007. There are few foreign companies operating on a large scale in Maanshan, although in recent years the city has attracted investments by large enterprises from both China and abroad, including Qingdao Brewery and Saint-Gobain of France.

Magang is one of China’s top 10 iron and steel corporations. Its principal products are steel plates, section steel, wire rods and train wheels. Linde Group’s BOC operates a joint venture with Magang that produces and supplies oxygen, nitrogen and argon directly to a new steel mill via a 2km-long pipeline.

Anhui Hualing Automobile Group, which specialises in the manufacture of heavy trucks, is a newcomer to the domestic auto industry. It has total assets of Rmb3bn, some 3,000 employees and an annual output capacity of 30,000 heavy trucks. The company has established technical partnerships with Japanese truck-makers Mitsubishi Fuso and Isuzu, and has also started to explore the export market.

Saint-Gobain operates two wholly-owned plants in Maanshan. One makes ductile iron pipes, while the other manufactures ductile iron fittings and other casting products. Together, the plants employ around 1,150 workers.

Toyo Grinding Ball (Maanshan) Co was established in 1995 by Japan’s Toyo Grinding Ball Co and Marubeni Corporation. It has a production capacity of 20,000 tonnes of high chrome cast balls, which are used in the cement and mining industries.

Mengniu Dairy Industry Group is a major player in the domestic dairy sector. It operates one of the largest ice-cream plants in the world in Maanshan, and it also has a major lactic acid milk plant in the city. These and other investments make Maanshan one of the biggest dairy production bases in China.

Nanjing-based China Yurun Food Group operates one of Asia’s biggest meat product processing base in the city. The base, which has an annual output capacity of 100,000 tons, was put into operation in December 2007.

Established in 1995, Maanshan ETDZ is a provincial-level development zone. With a planned area of 10 sq km, it lies 45km from Nanjing. Nanjing Lukou International Airport is just 45 minutes’ drive away.
The Nanjing-Wuhu Railway, part of the Nanjing-Tongling line, and National Highway 205 both pass through the city. The Nanjing-Maanshan Expressway connects with the Shanghai-Nanjing and Hefei-Nanjing expressways.

Currently, there is no bridge across the Yangtze at Maanshan, although the city is building a road crossing that should be completed by the end of 2010.

Another major project scheduled to be completed during the current five-year plan is the construction of an expressway linking Maanshan with Nanjing Lukou International Airport. This 40km road will also be linked with the Nanjing-Hangzhou Expressway. A new railway line connecting Nanjing with Anqing, passing through Maanshan, is under construction and is expected to open to traffic in 2010. Nanjing airport is about 30-40 minutes’ drive from Maanshan.

Situated in the northwest of Maanshan city on the southern bank of the Yangtze, Maanshan port is less than 50 years old. It is exactly halfway between two major ports: Wuhu 48km upstream and Nanjing the same distance downstream. Natural conditions are good along this stretch of the Yangtze. The river is wide and the water depth is 5 metres along much of the shoreline.

The port handles iron ore, steel, non-metal ores and construction materials for domestic markets, and iron and steel and construction materials for foreign trade. Magang is its dominant user, but it also serves other major companies in the region, including Xiangshan Sulphur Mining Co, one of China’s largest sulphur producers. Its cargo throughput in 2007 was 36.8m tons, 12m tons more than in the previous year.

Much of Magang’s iron ore is sourced domestically, but recently it has tapped into overseas markets in Brazil and Australia. Magang operates a zero stock policy, using barges to deliver its products to ports downstream as soon as they are finished.

The port’s Central Terminal is 6km from both the Nanjing-Wuhan Highway and National Highway 318, and 10km from the Nanjing-Maanshan Expressway. A dedicated railway line links it directly with the Magang plant.

Growing cargo volumes have put tremendous pressure on the port operator to upgrade its facilities and increase its handling capacity. In 2005, Magang bought a 45 per cent stake in the state-owned Maanshan Port Group; 40 per cent is held by the city’s State Asset Administration. This injection of funds will secure some of the financing needed for the various expansion projects that are planned.

According to Maanshan’s 2004-20 masterplan, the port will ultimately have seven terminals – Cihu, Central, Rentouji, Taipingfu, Jiangxinzhou, Guxihe and Cazhiji (the last for passenger transport). The terminals are expected to have a combined annual throughput of 58m tons of cargo by 2010 and 81m tons by 2020.

If you want to read more about Mannshan, its leading companies, major investment zones, transport network, port infrastructure and the logistics experience of FIEs in the city, click here to order an e-version of the city profile for £15. Alternatively, for information on all the major Yangtze port cities and much else besides, click here to buy Yangtze Transport: Accessing China's Interior for £85.

     
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