Construction has started on the Roadbot Abu Dhabi tyre project in Khalifa Industrial Zone Abu Dhabi (Kizad).
Groundbreaking work on the project marks the latest milestone in a 50-year agreement signed between Jiangsu Provincial Overseas Cooperation and Investment Company (Jocic) and Abu Dhabi Ports in 2017.
Developed by Chinese tire manufacturer Roadbot with a total investment of $614.37m (AED2.3bn), the factory is being built in Kizad’s China-UAE Industrial Capacity Cooperation Demonstration Zone.
The facility will be fully operational by October 2020, Abu Dhabi Ports said in a statement on Tuesday.
Spread across 27.5ha, the factory will have an initial annual production capacity of three million passenger car radial (PCR) tyres and one million truck and bus radial (TBR) tyres. Production figures will rise to 10 million PCR tyres by 2022, making it among the highest levels of production in the world for both varieties at a single location.
Speaking on the news, HE Dr Sultan Al Jaber, the UAE Minister of State and chairman of Abu Dhabi Ports, said: "Today’s groundbreaking demonstrates the increasingly close ties between the UAE and China, and reinforces the UAE’s role as a key partner in China’s Belt and Road initiative.
“China and the UAE enjoy a symbiotic relationship that cuts across culture, investment and trade, underpinned by a deep understanding of the important role we both play in the region’s economic development and prosperity."
Zhang Yingzi, speaking at the signing ceremony, added: “The Roadbot Abu Dhabi tyre project is the result of close cooperation between the UAE and Chinese governments. It is an important part of the Belt and Road Initiative and a crystallisation of multiculturalism, based on the principle of achieving shared growth through discussion and collaboration.”
The Roadbot project was launched during the visit of Chinese Premier Xi Jinping in 2017 to the UAE. Roadbot is the first Chinese firm to set up shop at the 220ha site since Jocic and Abu Dhabi Ports' agreement from 2017.