China Daily (Canada) - - BUSINESS -

The el­e­va­tor and es­ca­la­tor in­dus­try has been one of the sec­tors in China where for­eign com­pa­nies have been the dom­i­nant play­ers. But that lead may soon dis­ap­pear as Chi­nese com­pa­nies are fast catch­ing up with their for­eign peers, both in prod­ucts and tech­nol­ogy, in­dus­try sources said.

Li Shoulin, pres­i­dent of the China El­e­va­torAs­so­ci­a­tion, said that though global firms ac­count for the lion’s share in China’s el­e­va­tor mar­ket, do­mes­tic brands have been steadily im­prov­ing their mar­ket share.

“Do­mes­tic firms ac­count for about 40 per­cent of the mar­ket now, com­pared with 10 per­cent a decade ago. If orig­i­nal equip­ment man­u­fac­tur­ing is also in­cluded, then the share of the do­mes­tic firms will rise to more than 50 per­cent,” he said.

Thanks to China’s rapid eco­nomic growth and grow­ing de­mand for con­struc­tion projects, the na­tion has be­comethe world’s largest man­u­fac­turer and seller of el­e­va­tors, with an av­er­age an­nual growth rate of 20 per­cent over the past decade, ac­cord­ing to the as­so­ci­a­tion.

In 2013, China pro­duced more than 633,000 el­e­va­tors, up about 20 per­cent year-on-year, it said.

In the samepe­riod, the ex­port vol­ume rose by 35 Otis is like wa­ter­ing a bam­boo plant,” he said.

“Till the shoots come up, you will not see any­thing hap­pen­ing. But un­der­neath the ground the bam­boo has per­cent to 65,968 el­e­va­tors, with SouthKorea, Malaysia and In­done­sia be­ing the lead­ing ex­port des­ti­na­tions.

“The huge de­mand has helped boost the de­vel­op­ment of do­mes­tic pro­duc­ers in terms of both tech­nolo­gies and brand im­age,” Li said. “This in turn has strength­ened their con­fi­dence in com­pet­ing with for­eign brands.”

ZhuRui­hua, di­rec­tor of the op­er­a­tions cen­ter at Guang­dong-based Canny El­e­va­torCo Ltd, said his company is fo­cus­ing more on in­no­va­tion and ex­pand­ing prod­uct port­fo­lio.

“The brand recog­ni­tion in the in­ter­na­tional mar­ket has given us an edge in do­mes­tic or­ders aswell,” he said.

“Many real es­tate com­pa­nies, who are very sen­si­tive about cost, pre­fer do­mes­tic brands es­pe­cially as the prop­erty sec­tor is reel­ing fromtighter poli­cies.”

Some­do­mes­tic el­e­va­tor mak­ers are also ac­cel­er­at­ing the pace of over­seas ex­pan­sion.

IFE El­e­va­torCo, one of China’s largest el­e­va­tor man­u­fac­tur­ers, said it plans to set up a plant in South Amer­ica this year, with its fo­cus be­ing Brazil. The company has al­ready in­vested about $500,000 for a wholly owned branch in­Dubai and another in Jakarta. al­ready de­vel­oped a mas­sive roots sys­tem. We have been in China for 30 years, build­ing a big foun­da­tion. And now we are see­ing the growth.”

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