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Yueyang

The city of Yueyang, on the eastern shores of Dongting Lake, is the only major Yangtze port in Hunan province. It is situated in northeast Hunan, 132km from the provincial capital Changsha, and has a population of around 900,000.

Yueyang is important historically and culturally and is a major tourist destination. It lies in a rich agricultural area, noted for its production of grain, tea and cotton, and for the rearing of pigs. Fishing is also significant: Dongting Lake is China’s second largest freshwater lake, second only to Poyang Lake in Jiangxi province.

The petrochemicals industry is the most important locally, with prominent companies including Baling Petrochemical and Sinopec Changling Oil Refinery. Other significant sectors include textiles, animal feed, pharmaceuticals, building materials and paper-making.

FIEs in Yueyang include Shell, A.O. Smith of the US and Chia Tai of Thailand, which has a major animal feeds plant in the district. Praxair of the US has one of the biggest foreign investments in Yueyang. Its plant in Yingshan Petrochemical complex produces high-grade carbon dioxide and other industrial gases.

Prominent among domestic companies is Yueyang Paper Mill, part of the Tiger Forest and Paper Group, which lies on the shore of Dongting Lake. It produces high-quality paper for customers across China and overseas, particularly in Japan.

Sinopec Baling, situated to the northeast of the lake, specialises in the manufacture of chemical fibres and chemical fertilisers. Shell and Sinopec jointly operate a coal gasification plant within the Baling complex. In October 2008 Sinopec invested Rmb7.8bn in a renovation and expansion project designed to turn Baling into one of China’s largest non-ethylene fine chemicals production bases.

Wal-Mart operates a shopping mall in Yueyang, while Parkson of Malaysia has a department store in the city’s main pedestrianised street.

Established in 1992, Yueyang ETDZ is situated in the northeast of the city. Its total planned area is 30 sq km, of which nearly half has already been developed. Major industries in the ETDZ include biopharmaceuticals, chemicals, new materials and food processing.

Yueyang has reasonable transport connections. A new road bridge across the Yangtze connects Yueyang with Jingzhou in Hubei province. The Beijing-Guangzhou Railway, National Highway 107 and the Beijing-Zhuhai Expressway all pass through the city, as does the Wuhan-Guangzhou high-speed railway that opened in December 2009. A new railway line linking Yueyang with Jingzhou in Hubei province is planned.

Yueyang does not have its own airport, although one is being planned,. For the time being, the nearest options are in Changsha and Wuhan, both of which are accessible via the Beijing-Zhuhai Expressway.

Low water levels immediately downstream of the Three Gorges reservoir have long been a challenge to waterway officials. Recent droughts have exacerbated the problem and consequently Yueyang has become an important transhipment centre for vessels. It has also established itself as one of the most important feeders for Wuhan.

Yueyang port boasts a total of 142 berths, of which 24 can accommodate 3,000 dwt vessels with a total annual handling capacity of 22.5m tons. The berths are scattered among the city’s terminals: Yueyanglou, Chenglingji, Daorenji, Lucheng and Junshan.

Chenglingji terminal in the north of the city has the only Category One status in Hunan province, allowing foreign vessels to anchor. In 2002, it was merged with Tiger Forest and Paper although it handles various types of cargo and remains a common user terminal.

The city handled 60m tons of cargo in 2009, double the previous year’s total. Its principal cargo items include petroleum, coal, various ores, steel and agricultural products. The port’s investment priorities centre on the construction of a new terminal, known as Songyanghu. The three-phase expansion plan, which includes the construction of 13 berths altogether, will significantly increase the port’s general cargo and container capacity when fully completed in 2025. The first facilities became operational in January 2009 and have an annual capacity of 270,000 TEU, about four times the port’s previous capacity.

A dedicated rail line will be constructed to serve the Songyanghu, together with highways linking it with National Highway 107 and the downtown area of Yueyang.

If you want to read more about Yueyang, 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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