ZPMC stands for Zhenhua Port Machinery Company which is the old name for Shanghai Zhenhua Heavy Industries Company. This Chinese company produces port machinery for example quay cranes, container spreader and other large steel structures used in ports all around the world. The state-owned enterprise is the subsidiary company of China Communications Construction Company (CCCC) and was founded in 1992.
An eight kilometer long tunnel connects the Changxing Island with the mainland of China. ZPMC is located on the south side of this third biggest island of Shanghai at the Yangtze River. With an area bigger than 2.500.000 m2, it is one of the largest production facilities of ZMPC and the biggest heavy equipment manufacturing base in the world.
With a world market share over 70%, ZPMC is by far the biggest supplier of quay cranes. But also ZPMC must pay attention on their production processes. Since wages have been increasing in China during the last couple of years, a reduction in the number of employees has taken place. The base on Changxing Island knows a reduction from 23.000 employees to ‘only’ 13.000 employees. The capacity of the plant however has been the same despite this reduction in workers.
During the presentation the students were already surprised by the numbers shown about the production facility, but the tour had jet to come. After the company presentation a view on top of the building and a tour around the facilities were next on the program.
Due to the impressive view on top of the 29 floor high main building next to the base, the students were able to get a better understanding of these numbers. In a bird view over the bigger part of the production halls an imaginary production flow of the different processes could be seen. Starting a production at the first hall and moving step by step closer to the quay. More than one hundred quay cranes can be placed on the deep water quayside; ready for installation, commissioning. Finally, after three months, the quay crane will be lifted by one of the three floating cranes onto a heavy lift vessel and will be transported to the client’s port.
The tour by mini bus along the five kilometer quayside and the seven crane assembly halls, gave another unbelievable impression of the size and the amount of the almost endless activities at this base of ZPMC