A NEW shipbuilding behemoth has been created following the merger of two large Chinese corporations, it has been confirmed.

The merger of China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation and China State Shipbuilding Corporation was announced in Xinhua, the official press agency of the People’s Republic of China.

According to Xinhua, the new corporation has 147 scientific research institutes, enterprises and listed companies with total assets of 790 billion yuan (about AUD$165bn) and 310,000 employees.

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It has the largest shipbuilding and repairing base in China and the most complete research and development capability in the field of shipping, Xinhua stated.

Director of the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission Hao Peng was quoted in Xinhua as saying the reorganisation would help speed up the elimination of low-end backward production capacity and optimise the industrial structure of China’s shipbuilding industry.

He said the move was also conducive to accelerating the development of China’s high-tech and high-value-added research and manufacturing capability.

“In recent years, China’s shipbuilding industry has rapidly strengthened,” Xinhua claimed.

“Compared with the world-class shipbuilding powerhouses, however, China’s research and manufacturing capabilities in the field of high-tech and high value-added ships are insufficient, while the industry has excess manufacturing capacity.”

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