BEIJING, Aug 21 (Reuters) - General Electric Co (GE.N) said on Thursday it would deliver the first of 300 advanced locomotives to China by the end of August, with the remainder arriving by mid 2010.
The first two locomotives from a contract signed in 2005 will be shipped fully assembled from the United States, while the remaining 298 will be shipped as kits, with the local content gradually rising to a possible 80 percent, said Lorenzo Simonelli, the global president of GE Transportation.
“They will have up to 80 percent local content,” Simonelli told Reuters on the sidelines of a press conference to announce the delivery of the trains, which are valued at $450 million.
“It really is a localisation effort,” he said.
The rising local content is important to increase the profitability of the contract, said Tim Schweikert, the president for GE Transportation China.
GE is eyeing further sales, as China replaces its ageing fleet of 6,500 mainline locomotives, said executives.
The first locomotive assembled in China will be in October. ($=6.85 yuan) (Editing by Will Waterman)