Fri, May 27, 2011 - Page 12 News List

Acer plans to produce 40% of notebooks in Chongqing

By Jason Tan  /  Staff Reporter

Acer Inc (宏碁), one of the world’s top three PC brands, yesterday said that up to 40 percent of its notebooks would be produced in its new facilities in Chongqing, China, by the end of this year.

“We will produce our notebook and netbook PCs in Chongqing and gradually expand our manufacturing volume,” Acer president Jim Wong (翁建仁) said in a statement. “By the end of 2011, 30 to 40 percent of our total notebook and netbook PCs will be produced here.”

“Major contract makers have set foot in Chongqing and all will begin shipping by the second half of this year,” Wong said. “Key component suppliers have also had a presence here to create a complete supply chain.”

In addition to Acer, major information technology brands like Hewlett-Packard Co, along with contract makers such as Quanta Computer Inc (廣達), Hon Hai Precision Industry Co (鴻海精密) and Inventec Corp (英業達), have established operation or manufacturing centers in western China, either in Chongqing or Chengdu.

Despite the firms’ establishing facilities in western China to lower production costs, it remains to be seen whether the region will be able to replicate the successes of southeastern China — the world’s largest base for laptop manufacturing — the Market Intelligence & Consulting Institute (MIC, 產業情報研究所) said in December.

Only 6 percent of the world’s portable PCs are expected to be manufactured in western Chinese cities this year, while southeastern cities, including Kunshan and Changsu in Zhejiang Province, and Shenzhen in Guangdong Province, would still account for the bulk of production, a MIC survey found.

Component makers are worried about production costs unless western China is able to produce at least one-fifth of the world’s total notebooks, the survey said.

However, Acer said Chongqing is a transportation hub with good rail and air networks and provides an expedited global logistic clearance channel.

Rail shipments from Chongqing to Germany via central Asia only takes 13 days — half the time it takes to ship by sea, Acer said. There are already nine cargo flights weekly to global destinations, it said.

This will allow it to transport products quickly to those markets, Acer said.

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