LONDON – Nanjing Automobile Group Corp. (NAC) and the Export-Import Bank of China signed a loan agreement on September 13 in London, in which the bank promised to provide an estimated $35 million to NAC for its NAC-MG project in Birmingham, U.K.
The deal was signed during Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao’s visit to the U.K. and was part of several economic agreements China finalized with the country. It also marks the first time carmakers have received political export credit backing.
The money will be used to support NAC-MG’s U.K. business development and the implementation of its global strategy. NAC President Yu Jianwei said in London this past July that the company would invest an initial £10 million ($19 million) in MG’s Longbridge factory in Birmingham, and hopes to resume production of the MG brand cars in the first half of 2007. Planned models include the MG-TF Roadster and MG-7 series car. NAC expects to eventually produce 15,000 MG sports cars per year.
The NAC-MG project was officially approved by the Chinese Government on March 10, after NAC acquired MG Rover and its Powertrain Ltd. subsidiary for £53 million in July 2005. NAC-MG began shipping MG parts to Europe in June.