Made in China, assembled in Belarus

Chinese car manufacturer, Geely, and Maersk Line are working together to develop a Chinese automobile name, by shipping car parts for assembly overseas.

Feng Boxun, senior logistics specialist at Geely: “60% of our export business is via container vessels, and we have production facilities all over the world, from Russia to Uruguay and Sri Lanka.” Photo: Liu Yibin

Facts on the Geely Holding Group

  • Geely is China’s biggest car manufacturer. It also owns the Volvo brand, which it bought in the hope of breaking into the American and European markets.
  • It exports to 43 countries with production plants all over the world.
  • Maersk Line handled about 40% of Geely’s total container exports in 2014.

In a production plant in Belarus, car parts arrive fresh from China and are assembled before being shipped out to the domestic market. If Geely Automobile Holdings Limited realises its aspirations, its name will one day command the same brand recognition as the Toyotas and Fords of the world. The Fortune 500 company has its sights on putting its own stamp on the global car market.

Geely Automobile Holdings Limited, a giant Chinese car producer going global, is developing new technology together with Volvo in Sweden. The company wants to sell its products worldwide and instead of just exporting completed cars, it wants to increase its export of car parts to centrally placed assembly plants all over the world. This means a shift in logistics from using RO-RO vessels to using container vessels.

As Feng Boxun, senior logistics specialist at Geely says: “Now 60% of our export business is via container vessels, and we have production facilities all over the world, from Russia to Uruguay and Sri Lanka. Our Belarus factory is Geely’s most important overseas assembly plant.”
Shipping car parts out to domestic markets for assembly is part of the company’s plan to expand its global reach and minimise costs in the process. Maersk Line handled 40% of Geely’s 21,000 FFE of exports last year.

Cathy Yang, a sales representative at Maersk Line, says: “We not only handle the sea transportation for Geely, together with Damco, we handle Geely’s entire logistics supply chain. Our partnership extends to their overseas facilities such as that in Belarus. With this overarching partnership, we are able to respond well to emergency cases, such as when the client has an emergency request to carry volumes that exceed the originally agreed amount. To ensure the cargo is delivered on time requires control of the entire supply chain and shipping to two different ports, then transporting it inland. We are able to achieve this because of our partnership.”

Feng Boxum sums up the synergy as follows: “Maersk is a world-leading company in container shipping and logistics, and with their experience, this ties in with our global expansion strategy of making the Geely name known worldwide.”

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