Chinese Government Fines BYD and Seizes BYD Factory Site

WangMungerBuffettBYD2010-10-23.jpg“BYD Chairman Wang Chuanfu, left, at a celebration last month in Shenzhen city with Berkshire Hathaway’s Charles Munger, center, and Warren Buffett.” Source of caption and photo: online version of the WSJ article quoted and cited below.

(p. B3) BEIJING–China’s central government ordered BYD Co. to surrender land in a zoning dispute, a decision that is likely to slow the Chinese battery and auto maker’s push to expand in the nation’s growing auto market.

China’s Ministry of Land and Resources also hit BYD with a 2.95 million yuan ($442,000) fine, the ministry said on its website Wednesday. The ministry confiscated 121 acres of land in the central Chinese city of Xian, where BYD executives said the company has been building a car assembly plant. BYD had hoped to start production at the complex as early as next year.
The ministry said zoning for the land was “illegally adjusted” to industrial use from agricultural use but didn’t elaborate. The decision comes as some government officials have shown concern about excess capacity in the auto industry.
. . .
Mid American Energy Holdings Co., a unit of Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc., owns 10% of BYD.

For the full story, see:
NORIHIKO SHIROUZU. “China Deals a Setback to BYD.” The Wall Street Journal (Thurs., OCTOBER 14, 2010): B3.
(Note: ellipsis added.)
(Note: the online version of the article has the title “Beijing Halts Construction of BYD Auto Plant.”)

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