Hebei Zhonglian Polymer Technology Development Co, a wholly-owned subsidiary of CGN Nuclear Technology Development Co (CGNNT) hosted the first Xiongan Summit for Wire and Cable Industry in Xiongan New Area, Hebei province, July 1-2.
Themed on “Innovation-driven growth and transformation of scientific achievements”, the summit attracted more than 200 people, including local officials and experts from organizations and enterprises, to attend.
It aimed at building the “most complete” and “systematic” technical data system for industrial chain upgrading, and focused on constantly improving the industrial layout, setting up a quality platform for wire and cable industrial chain. The active participation in the construction of Xiongan New Area, is hoped to elevate the industry to a new era featuring scientific innovation, reasonable planning and industrialization.
Public information shows that China has emerged as the world's largest wire and cable manufacturer and boasts the fastest speed in wire and cable consumption. As the "vessel and nerve” of national economy, the industry’s output value for China reached 1.3 trillion yuan ($191 billion) in 2013, making it the second largest industry in China’s machinery sector, following the automobile industry. However, the per capita consumption in China was only about one fifth of that in developed countries.
In the future, with the other industries of the national economy booming, such as the smart grid, nuclear power, railways, airports, communications, automobiles and household appliances, the wire and cable industry will also enter a period of rapid growth.
According to the summit, Xiongan’s annual electricity consumption is expected to exceed 83 billion kWh and the investment on its distribution network will reach more than 100 billion yuan. In addition, the construction of railways, airports and communications in the future will also create numerous business opportunities for high-quality wire and cable producers like Zhonglian.
CGNNT General Manager Zhang Jianfeng said that irradiation crosslinking technology, which can promote the upgrade of wire and cable, will be more widely used due to the requirement in market segmentation.
The new area, mostly covering Xiongxian, Rongcheng and Anxin counties in Hebei, was approved by the central government in April. It is the third national demonstration zone after the Shenzhen Special Economic Zone and the Shanghai Pudong New Area.
How to integrate resources and seek new growth modes on such a historic opportunity are common challenges faced by the industry, Zhang noted.
“As the top 10 players in the domestic wire and cable market and the largest taxpayer in Xiongxian county in 2016, Zhonglian has taken the lead in integrating industrial resources and exploring new development modes,” said Zhang.
According to Zhang, CGNNT has preliminarily formed a high-end industrial chain for nuclear technology applications, and Zhonglian is a key pivot and serves as a platform for CGNNT’s development strategy on electron-accelerators, irradiation devices, irradiation processing services, and modified polymer materials.
After about 30 years of development, the irradiation crosslinking technology has helped form large industrial clusters and is mainly applied in a wide range of fields, including ships (aircraft carriers), airports, high-speed rail lines, vehicles and photovoltaic panels, according to experts at the summit.
Experts also pointed out the problems, such as structural contradictions, shortage of high-end products, uneven quality, and lack of scientific innovation ability.
China’s industrialization of irradiation cross-linked wire and cable began in 1980s when a group of domestic research institutes and enterprises like Zhonglian started to engaged in R&D and manufacturing.
Zhang Jianfeng said Zhonglian’s highlight on irradiation crosslinking polymer materials industry is in line with both the state's strategic positioning of the new area and the national 13th Five-Year Plan (2016-20).
The company plans to localize the production of special irradiation crosslinking cable material to replace imports, Zhang said.
The government of Hebei’s Baoding city once put forward an idea to CGN to build a town featuring the material industry. The news came from the summit.
Zhang said it’s worthy exploring such an “industry+town” approach and information will be released if CGNNT makes any moves in that direction in the future.
Founded in 1986, Zhonglian is one of the most important special cable material manufacturers in China and specializes in the production, R&D, and sales of macromolecule polymer materials. It is also one of the country’s only two nuclear –grade cable license holders that can supply products.
Zhonglian’s share in the domestic ship cable materials market stands at more than 70 percent and it provides special irradiation crosslinking cable materials for warships.