Cheung Kong Infrastructure
Extends Clustering Strategy Into Panyu
with RMB 1.2 Billion Infrastructure Development Plan
3 January, 2000 -- Hong Kong
Stepping into year 2000, Cheung Kong Infrastructure Holdings Limited ("CKI") announced a new milestone in the new millennium. CKI plans to invest in a RMB 1.2 billion infrastructure development plan in association with the city of Panyu in Guangdong Province. This large-scale development plan comprises a number of infrastructure projects, including the building, operation and management of the Beidou Bridge for which a contract was signed at the end of 1999. Letters of intent to construct the Linggang Bridge, a landfill, and a sewage treatment system in Panyu have also been signed. CKI's latest strategic investment in Panyu marks a new milestone in the Group's development in Guangdong Province, demonstrating again the use of its clustering strategy.
Located along the shore of the Pearl River Delta, Panyu enjoys excellent geographic advantages. As a key transport hub in Guangdong Province, Panyu is connected in the north to Guangzhou, and in the west to important industrial towns such as Nanhai, Fo Shan and Shunde. The city's Nansha Road and Guangzhou - Shenzhen Highway are also conveniently connected to the Humen Bridge leading to Shenzhen, which enjoys easy access to Hong Kong.
CKI's new project, Beidou Bridge, is 3.25 kilometers long. In the north, it begins at Panyu City's Shawanzhen Yangwuzhou, and is connected to the City's Western Ring Road and the 1904 Provincial Road. It then passes Chongkoucun, goes across Shawan Waterway, and ends at Lanhezhen Beidouwei. The bridge eventually connects to the old Guangzhou Zhuhai Highway via the 09007 Road.
Beidou Bridge is Panyu city's second bridge connecting the northern and southern parts of the city. The existing Shawan Bridge is heavily loaded with an average traffic of 50,000 cars passing through it everyday. Once completed, the Beidou Bridge would not only ease congestion on Shawan Bridge but would also smooth out the traffic in the northern part of the city, and this would contribute towards the economic development in the area.
The Beidou Bridge project is a joint venture between CKI and the Panyu Road & Bridge Company. The total investment amounts to RMB 170 million, with CKI taking 40% interest. The cooperation period will be 26 years. Construction work for the Bridge commenced in early 1999, and is expected to be open for operation in late 2000.
Group Managing Director of CKI, Mr. HL Kam said, "The beginning of the year is the time to review past results and start new initiatives. Looking back at 1999, CKI experienced significant breakthroughs in geographic expansion. We explored suitable investment opportunities all over the world and successfully acquired 19.97% of Envestra, Australia's largest publicly listed natural gas supplier, and also won the tender in operating Electricity Trust of South Australia. While we look for other opportunities overseas, we will continue to pursue projects in Mainland China and Hong Kong. With the Asian economies gradually recovering from the financial crisis and China's impending entry to the World Trade Organization, the Mainland is expected to benefit directly from these developments and there will be plentiful opportunities."
Mr. Kam continued, "Guangdong Province is close to Hong Kong and was one of the first provinces in China to open up its economy and record excellent growth. It has always been a key area for our investments. Panyu itself boasts many advantages, and it has quickly become the central hub of Guangzhou, Hong Kong and Macau with the rapid development of its transportation infrastructure. We have every confidence in the city's future development."
"Panyu is one of the focal points of CKI's future expansion plans, and the Beidou Bridge is the first of many CKI investments in Panyu. We will continue to explore and identify new projects for investment. In fact, there are already a number of infrastructure projects under negotiation in Panyu. Among them, letters of intent amounting to RMB 1 billion for the Linggang Bridge, a landfill and a sewage treatment system have also been signed. By applying our Group's clustering strategy in this high growth potential region, we will seek out further infrastructure development opportunities both in Panyu and in other parts of Guangdong Province," stated Mr. Kam.
CKI is a constituent stock of the Hang Seng Index. In terms
of market capitalization, CKI is the largest publicly listed
infrastructure company in Hong Kong. CKI's three core businesses
are infrastructure materials, energy, and transportation.
The company has investments in Mainland China, Hong Kong,
the Philippines, and Australia.