Chinese firm creates US jobs in rural Alabama

Global Business

Officials from the U.S. and China are in Chicago Dec. 16-18, talking trade and commercial opportunities. For the first time this year, the Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade is devoting ways to increase private sector engagement in both countries, as more Chinese manufacturing companies set up shop in the United States. CCTV America’s Jessica Stone reported on one such firm, Golden Dragon Copper, in Pine Hill, Alabama.

Chinese firm creates U.S. jobs in rural Alabama

Chinese firm creates U.S. jobs in rural Alabama

Officials from the U.S. and China are in Chicago Dec. 16-18, talking trade and commercial opportunities. For the first time this year, the Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade is devoting ways to increase private sector engagement in both countries, as more Chinese manufacturing companies set up shop in the United States. CCTV America’s Jessica Stone reported on one such firm, Golden Dragon Copper, in Pine Hill, Alabama.

Time seemed to have forgotten Pine Hill, in the years since a timber scout first named it in the 1830s. But now, this town in the poorest part of this state is boasting 150 new jobs, with the promise of hundreds more from China.

Golden Dragon Copper makes copper tubing for heating and air conditioning units and has been selling to American customers for 10 years. It takes nearly the whole length of its production facility to stretch copper as thin as it needs.

A factory in the U.S. allows Golden Dragon to cut down it’s transport time, from weeks, when it was transported from China, to just days, now that they are in Alabama.

“So we’re closer to the source of copper and not too far away from the customers, generally within 1,000 miles,” Keith Weil, Golden Dragon Copper’s North American vice president, said.

Roger Zhang, the president of the company’s North American operations said he is glad to be in Alabama. He said bridging cultural and language barriers between employees is a major part of the job. Golden Dragon is also pushing back against a unionization move by its American workers.

Mark Ma came from China to translate for the company’s 65 Chinese veteran engineers and U.S. employees.

“It’s very important to have the people have a better understanding with each other,” Ma said.

Laura Lewis, one of American employees, said she’s learned a lot from her Chinese colleagues, and she’s grateful for the work.

For a town with one stop light, every job created gives another boost to the local economy.

“It probably affects six counties around, so it’s a huge impact for our region,” Sheldon Day, mayor of nearby Thomasville, Alabama, said.

A region is also hoping to leverage Golden Dragon’s presence and attracting suppliers and other international companies.