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CHINA: Zhujiang to build new brewery - report

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Zhujiang Brewery is planning to build a new beer plant, according to press reports. Citing company sources, the China Daily reports that the company intends to spend RMB1 bln (US$120.9 m) on the new facility in its home base of Guangdong province. Production at the plant, which will have an annual capacity of 500,000 tons, is expected to begin by the middle of 2005, the paper said.

Construction for the first phase of the project, to be located in the city of Dongguan, with an annual capacity of 200,000 tons, is scheduled to begin in October. The second phase, with a capacity of 150,000 tons, will start by the end of 2007, the newspaper said.

Zhujiang Brewery's decision follows a similar move by its rival Kingway, which announced plans earlier this year to build a RMB700 m facility with a capacity of 400,000 tons, also in Dongguan.

Zhujiang Brewery currently holds a 60% share of the beer market in Dongguan, a city with a population of 1.5 m which consumed 150,000 tons of the 900,000 tons of beer that the Zhujiang Brewery sold altogether last year, according to company general manager Fang Guiquan.

Fang said Zhujiang Brewery will continue expanding, especially in southern China, through acquisitions of smaller peers or by building new plants.

The brewer's sales leapt by 25% to about 450,000 tons in the first half of this year, and Fang expects full-year sales to exceed 1.15 m tons.

Interbrew holds a 24% stake in Zhujiang.


Sectors: Beer & cider

Companies: Anheuser-Busch InBev

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