ZF Friedrichshafen CEO Siegfried Goll expects his company to achieve double-digit growth in Asia in each of the next three years.
Goll says the German chassis and transmission supplier had "very positive developments, particularly in China and Korea" in 2002.
On April 1, ZF's operations in China, Korea, Japan and southeast Asia were consolidated. Manage-ment board member Georg Harter adds responsibility for the regions to his duties as head of drive and chassis components at the ZF Sachs group.
Other ZF board members already have responsibility for the NAFTA and Mercosur trade regions. The shift signals the growing importance of Asia for the group. ZF has a total of 30 production and service locations in the region.
China is a key growth market for ZF. The company has seven production sites in the country and produces components across most of its product areas in China.
One of ZF's strongest businesses in China is commercial vehicle gearboxes and axles.
ZF also sees opportunities for increased truck transmission production to supply Hyundai and Daewoo in South Korea.
In November 2002 ZF signed a joint venture with Hyundai supplier affiliate Mobis Chassis to produce chassis components and modules.
ZF subsidiary, ZF Lemförder, has 51 percent of the joint venture, which is called ZF Chassis Systems Korea. The joint venture will deliver chassis parts to Hyundai and Kia.
ZF has also expanded its operations in Thailand where it supplies axles to BMW. At the end of 2002, ZF added assembly of the BMW 7-series axle to the 3-series axle that it already produces locally.