Posted: 29.05.2024 14:45:00

Novelties that came off the assembly line

Up to 30,000 units per year — a new car production project has been implemented in Belarus

Unison Plant, Obchak village, Minsk District 

The first Belarus-made VGV Sinotruk cars have rolled off the assembly line of the Unison Plant. These are seven-seater family vehicles at the price of a compact crossover. According to Aleksei Vaganov, a representative of Unison shareholders, it is planned to produce about 30,000 cars per year. “We launched this project a year ago following the agreements reached by the President of Belarus during his state visit to China in March 2023. Sinotruk (CNHTC) is the second largest car manufacturer in China, employing about 150,000 people. They have experience of co-operation with our country. They work in the field of heavy engineering and have already implemented successful projects in Belarus — for example, Weichai. The technical project was certified in six months. This is a fairly short period. The vehicle has a competitive price, which will allow reaching the production volume of 25-30 thousand vehicles per year in a year. This task was set by the Head of State,” Aleksei Vaganov shared the details.  
The first batch of cars was assembled by Belarusian and Chinese qualified specialists, whose tasks also included the transfer of their knowledge and skills to local workers. In the future, the company plans to launch the production of a range of other VGV Sinotruk models, including an all-wheel drive pickup truck, as well as the manufacture of electric vehicles. “As for localisation, welding, painting, gear box assembly and other elements will be carried out locally,” Aleksei Vaganov added. 

“BELGEE is now known not only in our country, but also abroad. We have made great progress in the development of production in terms of in-depth localisation and the manufacture of our own vehicle. In this regard, the Unison Plant fits harmoniously into the concept of expanding passenger car production capacities in Belarus,” Belarus’ First Deputy Minister of Industry Aleksandr Ogorodnikov pointed out. “Localisation today is a mandatory condition for any company with which we build a business. We discussed with our Chinese partners not just the assembly of cars, but deep localisation. I am sure that the production facilities that we see here will not be the only ones.” 
The main market for Belarus-made vehicles is Belarus and the Russian Federation. Negotiations are currently underway with other EAEU member states. 
“We chose Belarus to implement this project because it was meant to be,” commented Dong Cai, Director General of China National Heavy Duty Truck Group Co. Ltd (Sinotruk VGV). “We expect to continuously deepen our co-operation. As for production volumes, everything will depend on the market. The decision to localise the production of our vehicles in Belarus is an important step in our desire to increase production capacity. The Unison Plant has enough production facilities, and everything suits us. Moreover, this enterprise enjoys the support of the Government of Belarus, and is a reliable partner. Also, communication between the teams on both sides is quite successful. We are very pleased with the co-operation. The maintenance and promotion of cars is fully entrusted to the Belarusian side, because we believe that it is local dealers who should be engaged in promotion to ensure the fastest entry into the market.” 

By Vladislav Sychevich

Photos by Aleksey Vyazmitinov