China automaker Haima plans to triple car capacity

SHANGHAI, Sept 4 Wed Sep 3, 2008 10:48pm EDT

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SHANGHAI, Sept 4 (Reuters) - Mid-sized Chinese automaker Haima Investment Group Co (000572.SZ) said on Thursday it planned to build two plants to triple its annual car production capacity to 450,000 units.

Haima will invest 1.41 billion yuan ($206.1 million) in a plant in the central Chinese city of Zhengzhou that will be able to produce 150,000 cars annually, it said in a statement. Funding will come from internal resources.

Another facility, to be built by a subsidiary in the southern city of Haikou, Haima's home base, will give the firm additional annual capacity of 150,000 units, it said, although it gave no cost estimate for that project.

China's auto market, the world's second largest, has been growing at annual rates of more than 20 percent in recent years but began slowing this year, as a series of natural disasters and a fuel price hike dented demand.

Haima gave no time table for the projects, which it said would improve its competitiveness. ($1=6.842 Yuan) (Reporting by Fang Yan; Editing by Edmund Klamann)

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