What happened: American car manufacturer Tesla will begin partial operations at its Shanghai plant—its first factory outside the US—in the second half of 2019. Leveling at the site is already complete, and the plant is set to move on to the next phase of construction. The factory will integrate research and development, manufacturing, and sales.
Why it’s important: The plant is significant for Tesla and Shanghai. According to Mayor Ying Yong, it is the largest foreign investment-funded industrial project in the city’s history. In line with the country’s “Made in China 2025” plan, the city is moving towards advanced manufacturing and emerging industries. As part of the broad strategy, China aims to promote the country’s high-tech development by focusing on the manufacture of chips, robotics, new energy vehicles, and aviation equipment, among others.