CNH Global N.V. will build a new manufacturing plant for its Case and New Holland brand agricultural equipment in Harbin, China. The Illinois-based company estimated the initial investment for the 4.3-million sq. ft. plant at $90 million, but it did not offer a schedule for the project.
The new plant will produce high-horsepower tractors, combine harvesters, and other agricultural machines. CNH current assembles high-horsepower tractors and machines at Harbin, in northeast China, and it manufactures low- and medium-horsepower tractors in Shanghai. The company claims market leadership in a China for its high-horsepower tractors and harvesting equipment, and it also supplies construction equipment like Case excavators, backhoe loaders, and skid steer loaders, through distributors.
CNH said the new investment would strengthen its position in China. "China is a very important market for us and we strongly believe in its potential,” stated Richard Tobin, the company’s new president and CEO. “CNH has invested in this country for more than 100 years, when the first International Harvester tractor was imported to China. We have since steadily developed our relationship with China and will continue to invest to ensure our customers have access to our best technologies and expertise."
CNH is a majority-owned subsidiary of Fiat Industrial S.p.A. In December, it offered $246 million to buy the Norwegian farm equipment builder Kverneland ASA in hopes of increasing its share of the European agriculture market, but Kubota Corp outbid it. It may yet increase its bid, though Kubota already holds a minority stake in Kverneland.