US soft-drink giant Coca-Cola will set up three new plants in China this year at an investment of $2 billion, the company said.
Two bottling plants will be set up in south China’s Guangdong province and Hohhot, in north China’s Inner Mongolia Autonomous region, said Muhtar Kent, chairman and CEO, Coca-Cola.
“We will also construct a new facility, which will be one of the largest plants we have in this country, in central China’s Henan Province this year.”
The $42-billion investment package is for the period 2008 to 2011. Last year, Coca-Cola inaugurated three new factories, in northwest China’s Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous region, east China’s Jiangxi province and central China’s Hubei province.
“We will also increase the capacity of some existing factories, equip them with new production lines as well as new trucks and warehouses,” Kent was quoted as saying by Xinhua.
Besides production, Coca-Cola will make significant investment in marketing, distribution, logistics and brand innovation.
China’s actual non-alcoholic ready-to-drink market is probably the second-largest in the world today, he said. “I think China will overtake the US to become the world's largest non-alcoholic ready-to-drink market in a short period of time.”