Gamesa, a global leader in the manufacture and maintenance of wind turbines, continues to strengthen its position in China, where it will triple its investment through 2012 to expand and adapt its manufacturing centres for the development of its new turbine systems.

Gamesa, which by 2009 had invested a total of 42 million euros on facilities in China, plans to invest more than 90 million euros (2010-2012), bringing its cumulative investments to more than 130 million euros, to meet rising demand from the wind energy industry in the Asian country and to address local production needs, in the medium term, for its new G9X-2.0 MW, G10X-4.5 MW and offshore turbine systems.

During a conference on the Chinese wind energy market jointly organised by Gamesa and Morgan Stanley and held at the Spanish Pavilion at the Shanghai Expo 2010, Gamesa Chairman Jorge Calvet stated that, “one of Gamesa’s goals is to cement its position as one of the top five players in the Chinese wind energy industry, to participate in the industry’s growth and meet the needs of its customers as a manufacturer and operator of maintenance services and a developer of wind farms (along with local partners) in the regions with the greatest potential for the wind energy business.”

Gamesa’s forecasts indicate that in 2011, the Chinese market will account for more than 30% of the total MW sold (vs. 15% in 2009), which will entail nearly doubling sales in China within two years – between 800 MW and 1,000 MW – according to the latest forecasts the company has issued for total sales in 2011.

Groundbreaking at Gamesa’s sixth manufacturing plant in China

Gamesa’s chairman also announced that the company has broken ground on its sixth manufacturing centre in China, a factory in the province of Inner Mongolia, one of China’s leading hubs for wind energy development. The factory is designed for the assembly of nacelles for the G8X-2 MW turbine model, and will have annual production capacity totalling 500 MW. The plant is set to begin operating in 2011.

This news comes four months after Gamesa celebrated the groundbreaking of its fifth manufacturing plant in China (equipped with annual production capacity of 500 MW of G8X-2 MW wind turbines) in the city of Da’an, in Jilin Province (in northwest China), a region boasting one of the richest wind energy resources in China.

“It is our honour to announce and celebrate the fact that we have started construction on our new facility in Inner Mongolia here at the China Wind Summit” -said Calvet -. “This new plant represents a great opportunity to keep serving and growing with our clients as a reliable partner in the province that the government has targeted to have the highest wind power capacity in all of China. Our efforts here will not only bring employment and tax revenues to the province, but they will further develop China’s suppliers, who are providing almost all of the components of the machines that this facility will produce.”

In addition to the two factories currently under construction, Gamesa has four manufacturing centres (blades, nacelle, generators and gearbox assembly) in the province of Tianjin, home to the company’s largest manufacturing base outside of Spain.

When Jilin and Inner Mongolia come online in 2011, Gamesa’s production capacity in China will total 1,500 MW per year.

First deliveries of G8X-2.0 MW turbine systems manufactured in China

Gamesa in recent months also began supplying and installing the first 62 turbines (of a total of 96 units — 192 MW contracted for Chinese corporation Longyuan) of its G8X-2.0 MW model, manufactured in China.

The company began production of its new model at the Hua Yuan (Tianjin) factory in February upon completion of a project to expand the plant’s capacity (400 MW) in 2009.

The G8X-2.0 MW accounted for 36% of the MW the company sold in China in the first half of 2010. Gamesa has also installed more than 2,000 of its Gamesa model G5X-850 kW turbines at more than 60 sites in China.

The competitive advantage of wind farm development: a portfolio of 3,185 MW

Gamesa also operates as a wind farm developer in China, a competitive advantage which it us developing in conjunction with the country’s leading (global and provincial) power companies, thanks to its comprehensive understanding of the wind business. As of June 2010, Gamesa had a wind farm project pipeline in China totalling 2,675 MW at varying stages of development, but this figure has climbed to 3,185 MW in the past two months.

The company recently signed new strategic agreements to develop and supply 1,315.3 MW of wind capacity between 2010 and 2013. The agreements, which Gamesa signed with two of China’s largest power companies, Guangdong Nuclear Wind and Datang Renewable Power, call for the company to supply its Gamesa G8X-2.0 MW and G5X-850 kW turbine systems.

Gamesa and Guangdong will jointly develop and build wind farms in the provinces of Liaoning (576 MW) and Heilongjiang (450 MW), at which Gamesa will also install the G8X-2.0 MW turbines it will manufacture at its plants in China.

This will not be the first time the two companies have worked together to develop wind projects. Gamesa and Guangdong Nuclear Wind in early 2010 began operating their first two wind farms in Taipingshan and Tangwangshan. Gamesa is building another four wind farms with combined capacity of 200 MW for some clients.

Meanwhile, in conjunction with Datang Renewable Power, Gamesa will develop and build another 289.5 MW in Liaoning, where Gamesa will install both its G8X-2.0 MW and G5X-850 kW wind turbines.

The world’s leading wind farm market in 2009

China in 2009 cemented its position as the fastest-growing wind energy market in the world, nearly doubling its wind energy generation capacity with the rollout of 13.7 GW of wind assets. This 113% increase over 2008 brought the country’s installed capacity to 26 GW, making it the largest wind power market in the world.

Last year, the Chinese government approved the creation seven Wind Power Bases (WPBs) where – because of high sustained winds and proximity to the national grid – the establishment of wind power production facilities will be encouraged with preferential policies and direct connection to the national power grid. By 2020 power generated by wind farms in the seven WPBs will account for 74% of China’s total wind power generating capacity.

China offers significant prospects for future growth, due to the size of its market, Chinese authorities’ awareness of environmental and pollution problems and the launch of a renewable energy plan, which may be bolstered in China’s new five-year plan, in which authorities may boost the country’s initial target of 15% for renewable energy capacity for 2010.

“Gamesa is heavily committed to the development of China’s renewable energy sector. As such we are delighted to have the opportunity to convene the China Wind Summit and gathering key wind industry players from government, investment and industry fields. By helping China harness the everlasting nature of wind energy, Gamesa is a vital partner helping China to meet the challenges of energy scarcity, carbon intensity and sustainable development. As China strives to meet the targets of 15% of energy from renewable energy and a 40-45% cut in emissions by 2020, developing robust capabilities to harness “everlasting” wind power in China is critical”, said Gamesa Chairman Jorge Calvet.

About Gamesa

With more than 15 years’ experience, Gamesa is a world leader in the design, manufacture, installation and maintenance of wind turbines, with more than 20,000 MW installed in 20 countries on four continents.

The company is also a global benchmark in the market for the development, construction and sale of wind farms, with more than 3,500 MW installed and a wind farm portfolio totalling 22,000 MW at varying stages of development in Europe, America and Asia.

With 30 manufacturing facilities in Europe, the USA, China and India, and 4,400 MW of annual manufacturing capacity, Gamesa has an international workforce of more than 6,300 people.