China/France: Song Zhi Ping, president of China National Building Material Company (CNBM), and Frédéric Sanchez, chairman of Fives, have signed strategic agreement towards climate change and cooperation in third countries. This agreement develops the collaboration plans drawn up in January 2019 between cement plant manufacturer CNBM the engineering group Fives. It forecasts a volume of business of at least Euro600m over three years, and forms part of CNBM’s stated strategy of developing in partnership with western companies. The agreement was signed at the Elysée Palace in Paris during a state visit to France by China’s President Xi Jinping.
The agreement focuses on upgrading CNBM’s cement plants in China, building new plants outside of China and creating a Joint Engineering Centre to implement these projects and share information. The Joint Engineering Centre was inaugurated on 28 February 2019 in Shanghai. With regards to modernising its cement production lines in China, Fives said that its technologies, in grinding in particular, would ‘significantly’ improve performance and return on investment with regards to modernising CNBM’s domestic cement production lines. Fives said that the agreement is in full alignment with the Paris Agreement. It added that the agreement also shows the ‘mutual trust’ between the two companies with respect to intellectual property.