Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha (NYK Line), Japan's largest shipping firm by group sales, said on March 30 that it plans to build and expand car-shipping terminals at Indian and Chinese ports.
NYK Line boasts a fleet of over 100 automobile carriers, the world's largest. The investment plans reflect the Tokyo-based company's belief that China and India -- the world's two most populous and fastest-growing countries -- will become major automobile export bases in the future.
In India, NYK Line plans to construct a new car-export terminal at the Port of Mundra in the western province of Gujarat jointly with a local company in 2011, a company official said, requesting not to be named.
After building the terminal at the Port of Mundra, NYK Line also plans to construct another car-export terminal near the Port of Chennai in the southeastern province of Tamil Nadu, the official said. Chennai, formerly called Madras, is the capital city of the province.
In China, NYK Line already operates automobile terminals at the Ports of Dalian, Tianjin and Shanghai jointly with local companies.
The Japanese shipping firm plans to expand the capacity of both the Tianjin and Shanghai facilities about 3-fold between this year and next year, the company official said.
In addition, NYK Line is considering securing an automobile terminal in Guangzhou, possibly by the end of this year, by acquiring an equity stake in a local company, the official said. In Guangzhou, Toyota Motor Corp., Honda Motor Co. and other automakers have factories.
The NYK Line official did not disclose how much the car terminal investments in India and China will cost.
NYK Line handled a total of about 2 million automobiles at its car terminals worldwide in fiscal 2008, which ended on March 31, 2008. Through the investments in India and China, the company aims to boost the number by 25% to about 2.5 million, the official said.