Caterpillar Inc. continues to grow its global production capacity to take advantage of increasing demand for heavy construction equipment in developing nations across the globe. The company plans to build a brand new wheel loader factory along the east coast of China that will develop a new model of wheel loader for use in China and other developing countries. Wheel loaders use wide buckets to scoop up gravel, sand and other materials and transport them to dump trucks.
“The Asia Pacific Proving Ground will be critical for Caterpillar to develop and validate the right products for growth markets quickly and cost effectively,” said Tana Utley, Caterpillar Vice President and Chief Technology Officer in charge of the Product Development and Global Technology Division. “After this new proving ground is open, Caterpillar will be better positioned to compete and support its growing customer base in China and across Asia.”
Based out of Peoria, Illinois, Caterpillar Inc. is the world’s largest construction equipment manufacturer and has been steadily growing its operations in southeast Asia in 2011. Caterpillar currently owns sixteen other manufacturing facilities throughout China.
“This is another important step as Caterpillar continues to invest in its business in China to support our customers who continue to play a role in the transformation of the Chinese economy,” said Kevin Thieneman, Caterpillar country manager for China.
Construction of its new facility is expected to be wrapped up in the fourth quarter of 2012. The project will also include building a brand new research facility that will begin operations in the third quarter of 2012.
The project in China is one of several recent expansions that Caterpillar Inc. has made as the company seeks to grow its influence in an emerging market in Asia. In the last few months Caterpillar has also announced plans to build its second tractor manufacturing facility in Thailand.
Construction of the 430,000 square foot factory will begin on the Hemaraj Rayong Industrial Land in Rayong Province later this year, with production scheduled to begin in late 2013. Caterpillar anticipates that the new facility will employ about nine hundred people once it is fully operational and at full capacity.