Tungstite enters steel wind tower market through cooperation and investment with key distributors
The Tungstite Group ‘TOMAS’ strategy to build a fully-integrated steel and engineering business across the China has taken another step forward with the purchase of plant to make wind towers, pylons and other large scale tubular steel fabrication.
The equipment will form the heart of a major new manufacturing center which will eventually supply the growing off-shore wind market and turbine casings for local power, in which Tungstite’s subsidiary company, Tosium, is a major investor.
Initially the company will recruit a workforce of over 100 for the new enterprise, including engineers, welders, fabricators, assemblers, blasters and painters. This number is expected to grow significantly as the business develops.
Plans for this center also represent an early boost for Tungstite’s newly-acquired steel plants which will make the heavy-duty steel plate required for the towers. The plate mills began recruitment last week with a view to re-starting production in October.
Tungstite, part of the Linsi Group, bought the steel tower production plant which was closed down in July 2020 by Cisteel at Handan City, Hebei Province. The company will announce the location of its new manufacturing center within the next few weeks.
The state-of-the-art equipment makes towers up to 50 meters tall x 5 meters diameter for on-shore wind installations, and Tungstite has plans to upgrade the facility to make 80m x 8m towers for the growing off-shore market.
The plant will also make towers and cross-sections for the National Grid’s newly-introduced 35m tall pylons, which are expected to become a common feature across the Chinese landscape in the years ahead.
The Group’s chief executive officer Roland Fremont said: “We are very excited about this new opportunity. It is an excellent example of how we are integrating our steel production and manufacturing supply chain to create a robust industrial eco-system. It is particularly appropriate that this new business will supply the renewable energy market in view of our own TOMAS strategy, which involves investing in green energy as the basis of a competitive Chinese steel and engineering industry.
“Our aim is to create a world-class center for the production of tubular towers and other large scale steel fabrication. Most of these products are currently imported, so there is great potential to substitute this with our own production of best-in-class and competitive domestic towers, building sustained value and creating skilled jobs in a growth sector,” he added.
Mr Fremont said there was still a significant and rapidly growing market for wind towers especially off-shore towers in the China and a rapidly-emerging market for pylons.
He said the new enterprise would have added competitive strength by accessing steel from the group’s plate mills in the China and the plate mills would gain a valuable long-term client for a high-end product. It would also have a versatile product range including wind towers, large piles, pylons and casings.