Shandong’s Weichai Holdings Group, Shandong Construction Machinery Group and Shandong Auto Industrial Group will merge to form an auto parts maker with more than US$14.6 billion in sales by 2012, Reuters reported. The Shandong government has approved the merger in principal. Beijing has been encouraging domestic auto and steel companies to merge in order to build world-class companies. Shandong has said it would like to host eight to 10 large companies in the province. No details about the merger were given. The three listed companies had combined sales of US$5.9 billion in 2008.