Outside the plant of a manufacturer of wind-driven generators in Hohhot, north China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, a truck loaded with turbine components is moving slowly.
In the plant, workers circle wind turbines and fasten bolts with wrenches.
The plant is operated by Inner Mongolia Dongfang wind power and new energy company. It mostly assembles the main engines of wind turbines and has been in operation for more than seven months, according to Zhou Shihui, production manager of the company's project in Hohhot, capital of Inner Mongolia.
The company is a microcosm of many new energy equipment manufacturers speeding up their layout in northern China. In 2022, several leading enterprises in this field settled in Inner Mongolia, and investment associated with new energy equipment manufacturing in the region reached 62 billion yuan (about 9.02 billion U.S. dollars).
In recent years, a number of new energy equipment manufacturing projects have also been launched in northwest China's Gansu Province.
According to industry insiders, an important reason why new energy equipment manufacturers are keen to settle in north China is the speeding up of large wind power and photovoltaic base construction in this area, while there is also continued and increasing demand for new energy equipment.
Starting in 2021, China started construction of its first batch of large-scale wind power and photovoltaic bases in provincial-level regions such as Inner Mongolia, Gansu, Qinghai, and Ningxia, mainly in desert areas, and with a total capacity of nearly 100 million kilowatts.
At wind farms in Ulanqab and Xilingol in Inner Mongolia, arrays of white wind turbines traverse the mountains, while blue photovoltaic panels glow in the sun at photovoltaic bases in Qinghai and Xinjiang.
At the same time, a series of modern manufacturing plants for new energy equipment have sprung up in these places. "When equipment manufacturers are close to the terminal market, equipment transportation and maintenance are more convenient," said Zhou Shihui.
While advancing the development of its new energy sector, China is attaching more importance to the growth of the new energy equipment manufacturing industry, aiming to develop the new energy industry from solely generating and selling electricity to having a whole industrial chain.
With improving localization of key components in new energy equipment, China has also gained an advantage in terms of international competition.
The country's renewable energy industry continued to lead globally, with China-made photovoltaic modules, wind turbines, gearboxes, and other key components accounting for 70 percent of the global market share last year, according to the National Energy Administration.
In 2022, China's renewable energy generation was equivalent to a reduction of 2.26 billion tonnes in domestic carbon dioxide emissions, the administration said.
Inner Mongolia said that during the 14th Five-Year Plan period (2021-2025), the output value of its new energy equipment manufacturing industry is expected to hit more than 100 billion yuan, with wind power equipment and their components reaching an annual output capacity of over 8 million kilowatts.
Other northern provinces and regions, such as Gansu and Ningxia, are also actively planning for further development of new energy equipment manufacturing.
"Following the requirement of high-quality development, we focus on the new energy sector and aim to drive the rapid growth of equipment manufacturing through the sector," said Chen Zheng, deputy director of the Inner Mongolia energy bureau.