RUSSIA: Transmash Holding and Finnish maritime and power generation engine maker Wärtsilä are to form a joint venture to produce diesel engines in the Russian city of Penza from 2012.

Production is expected to reach 250 to 300 engines a year, mostly for the Russian market where Wärtsilä sees 'significant opportunities' to supply RZD.

An agreement was signed during Prime Minister Putin's visit to Finland on May 27. The joint venture is a 'strategically important step for Wärtsilä to broaden its business into the rail market', according to President & CEO Ole Johansson. 'It offers Wärtsilä a promising opportunity to leverage its high competence and expertise in advanced engine and modern manufacturing technology. This creates the potential to increase sales of Wärtsilä's products and services beyond our traditional marine and energy markets.'

Wärtsilä is investing €30m in the plant, which will assemble engines for the maritime and power sectors, plus a version of the Wärtsilä 20 for shunting locomotives.

TMH's Bryansk subsidiary had already signed an agreement in 2007 to manufacture Wärtsilä low-speed marine diesel engines under licence.