DHL Express to invest $ 175 mln in Shanghai air hub

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SHANGHAI, Nov 26 (Reuters) Deutsche Post's delivery arm DHL Express will build a 5 million air hub in Shanghai as it moves to strengthen its foothold in the fast-growing market, the company said on Monday.

It hopes the new facility, due to be up and running in the second half of 2010, will help it to maintain rapid sales growth in mainland China, DHL Express' Greater China president told Reuters after a news conference announcing the investment.

''In the last few years, we have been growing 35 to 40 percent in China,'' said Jerry Hsu, also DHL Express' executive vice president for Asia Pacific.

He added that he hoped to maintain that rate of annual sales growth beyond 2010. The company has not disclosed sales figures for China.

DHL Express, along with rivals FedEx Corp and United Parcel Service, is increasingly focusing on Asia, and China in particular, where rocketing global trade is driving demand for freight and logistics services.

The air hub at Shanghai's Pudong International Airport will be able to sort up to 20,000 parcels and 20,000 documents per hour upon its completion, DHL said in a statement.

The 55,000 square metre facility will be the third foreign-funded air hub in mainland China and the second of its kind in Shanghai.

FedEx has committed to building an air hub in the southern city of Guangzhou, while UPS is building a hub in Shanghai.

DHL Express is also investing 0 million to double the size of a facility at Hong Kong International Airport to 35,000 square metres.

The company currently controls roughly 40 percent of the international express delivery market in China, leading UPS, which holds a one-fifth share, according to analysts.

DHL Express and other DHL companies have invested SHANGHAI, Nov 26 (Reuters) Deutsche Post's delivery arm DHL Express will build a $175 million air hub in Shanghai as it moves to strengthen its foothold in the fast-growing market, the company said on Monday.

It hopes the new facility, due to be up and running in the second half of 2010, will help it to maintain rapid sales growth in mainland China, DHL Express' Greater China president told Reuters after a news conference announcing the investment.

''In the last few years, we have been growing 35 to 40 percent in China,'' said Jerry Hsu, also DHL Express' executive vice president for Asia Pacific.

He added that he hoped to maintain that rate of annual sales growth beyond 2010. The company has not disclosed sales figures for China.

DHL Express, along with rivals FedEx Corp and United Parcel Service, is increasingly focusing on Asia, and China in particular, where rocketing global trade is driving demand for freight and logistics services.

The air hub at Shanghai's Pudong International Airport will be able to sort up to 20,000 parcels and 20,000 documents per hour upon its completion, DHL said in a statement.

The 55,000 square metre facility will be the third foreign-funded air hub in mainland China and the second of its kind in Shanghai.

FedEx has committed to building an air hub in the southern city of Guangzhou, while UPS is building a hub in Shanghai.

DHL Express is also investing $110 million to double the size of a facility at Hong Kong International Airport to 35,000 square metres.

The company currently controls roughly 40 percent of the international express delivery market in China, leading UPS, which holds a one-fifth share, according to analysts.

DHL Express and other DHL companies have invested $2.2 billion in China over the past few years, the company said.

REUTERS SLD BST1238 .2 billion in China over the past few years, the company said.

REUTERS SLD BST1238

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