China's leading sport utility vehicles (SUV) and pickup maker Great Wall Motors has seen its plant in Russia's Tula region put into operation.
The operation of the factory officially started on Wednesday. Great Wall Motors' first "global car", the HAVAL F7, was rolled off the production line in the newly-launched factory.
According to the company, the Tula factory is the first overseas complete vehicle manufacturing factory of Chinese automobile enterprises, which covers the production processes of stamping, welding, painting and assembling.
With an investment of 500 million U.S. dollars, the factory has an annual production capacity of 150,000 vehicles and its construction lasted for four years.
It is estimated that the total output value of the factory will exceed 18 billion yuan (2.6 billion U. S. dollars), and about 4,000 jobs will be created in Russia.
Under the Belt and Road Initiative, the factory's products will also enter nearby countries such as Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan, according to the company.
Headquartered in the city of Baoding, north China's Hebei Province, the company owns several SUV and car brands like Haval, Great Wall, WEY and ORA.
So far, the company has sold over 600,000 vehicles overseas. It exported 46,995 vehicles in 2018, up 20 percent year on year.