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Chinese companies eyeing UK's infrastructure dev't


03-30-2015 16:40 BJT

The United Kingdom is looking to the east in infrastructure investments by joining the Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank but at the same time Chinese companies are also expanding their stakes in the UK's infrastructure projects.

The Manchester Airport is the third busiest in the UK in terms of passenger numbers. To enlarge its passenger capacity, the airport published a master plan for its proposed expansions until 2030 with investments of 800 million pounds.

The expansion plan drew attention from global construction companies including a Chinese construction and engineering firm, the Beijing Construction Engineering Group.

After appraising the company's expertise and financing capabilities, Britain announced in October 2013 that the Beijing Construction Engineering Group would participate in the airport expansion.

"The expansion project of Manchester Airport is very important for our overseas businesses. We have confidence in this project," Beijing Construction Engineering Group's engineer Liu Yaochang said.

According to the agreement, the Beijing Construction Engineering Group will take charge of the construction of roads, power supplies and drainage systems.

"We have attached great attention to the projects and we are glad that the projects are going well. Besides that the Manchester Airport has agreed to let us take over the logistics center project," Liu said.

The Manchester Airport expansion project is the latest in a line of new partnerships being forged between the UK and China. The UK became the top destination in Europe for Chinese investments in 2014. The rapid growth of Chinese investment in the UK was set to continue this year.

The London-based Center for Economics and Business Research said in a report that China is set to invest 105 billion pounds in UK infrastructure by 2025, with energy, property and transport the biggest recipients.

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