After many years’ development, China’s bearing industry already has considerable production scale, high technology, and high quality standards. Bearing enterprises which have a certain scale have grown to more than 1,500. Employees have researched about eight million. The annual production of bearing products has increased from one hundred and thirty-eight thousand in 1949 to two billion. And the bearing brands increase from 100 to over 7000, up more than 28,000 specifications. Over the past 10 years, well-known foreign bearing companies (such as SKF, FAG, NSK, NBM, KOYO, TIMKEN, TORRINGTON, etc.) have invested and set up factories in China which has played a significant role in the improvement of the design, the production technology and production management, modernization of the production equipment, and the improved product quality and performance.
On the other hand, bearing manufacturers in China also face the fierce competition as well as challenges from the well-known foreign bearing companies. This will obviously accelerate the adjustment of industrial structure and product of China’s bearing industry. We can see that in this process, opportunities coexist with challenges, and production coexists with the development. How to seize the opportunity to improve the viability of enterprises and how to get sustained and rapid development are the unavoidable problems which are placed in front of the bearing industry in China.
At present, China’s bearing output is more than two billion units. The output value is more than 20 billion Yuan. The annual export volume exceeds 770 million units. And foreign exchange earned through exports is about 700 million U.S. dollars. Chinese bearings can meet domestic needs for more than 70% of product variety. Besides, the export volume is also increased at a higher proportion.
With our country entering the ranks of the world’s largest producer of bearings, we should also pay attention to many problems. Deep groove ball bearings of small or medium size are still produced at a low level and at a large quantity which lead to the serious over-supply problems. And the price war intensified due to intense market competition. This situation will affect the transformation and technological progress of the whole bearing industry which can put much negative effect on our bearing products in the international market, and seriously constrain the development of China’s bearing industry.
Bearings with strict quality requirements and high added value still have to be imported. For example, many kinds of bearings such as car bearings, high speed railway bearings, and bearings for equipment maintenance still in great needs. It is a pity that there is still a great gap between bearings produced in China and those produced by many famous foreign enterprises in terms of performance and price ratio, high accuracy, low noise, long life and high reliability.