SHANGHAI (Aug. 27, 2015) — Double Coin Holdings Ltd., one of China's largest tire manufacturers, is studying the feasibility of building a tire plant outside of China as a way of growing the company and combating the higher duties it is facing for exporting OTR tires and passenger and light truck tires to the U.S.
Possible sites include the U.S. and Thailand, said Liu Xunfeng, chairman of Huayi Shanghai (Group) Co., a state-owned, $10 billion company that holds a 66-percent ownership in Double Coin. The remaining shares are traded on the Chinese stock market. Mr. Liu spoke about the possibility of the new plant in an interview Aug. 26 in Shanghai with the U.S. tire trade press.
The Huayi executive would not speculate on a timetable for deciding on the feasibility of a new plant, which would be Double Coin's first outside of China. He also declined to specify what type of tires the plant might build. Mr. Liu did say, however, that the company has good cooperative relationships with companies in various industries in both Thailand and the U.S., making them good choices for a factory.
“That's why we are considering a possibility for a tire plant in America, but it's only considering, thinking,” Mr. Liu said. “There's no decision.”
The company, he said, still needs to do more due diligence for the lawyers, unions, policies, market competitiveness, etc. “because for Chinese companies to sell the products to America is one thing. To set up a plant in America is another thing. It is totally different.”