QINGDAO, in Shandong province, is to get a 46-storey Bank of China (BOC) tower. The joint-venture high-rise, symbolising the presence of the BOC Hongkong-Macau regional office in the city, involves investment of US$50 million. Work has started on the 7,500 sq m site in the prime commercial district of east Qingdao, with completion expected in three years. Qingdao Deputy Mayor Qin Jiahao said yesterday: ''The BOC tower will help boost the economic development of the eastern part of Qingdao, where the building will be located.'' China Development Investment (Hongkong), a diversified investment arm of the BOC group, and Po Sang Bank, a member of the BOC group, will each take a 30 per cent stake in the venture. Kiu Kwong Investment Corp, a property investment arm under the BOC banner, and Qingdao Yinzhou Property Development Co, a joint-stock company in Qingdao, will equally share the rest. The 200-metre tower, with a floor area of 80,000 sq m, will house branches of BOC and Po Sang Bank, as well as a shopping mall and entertainment facilities. China Development Investment (Hongkong) deputy general manager Hou Wenzao said BOC had committed itself to more than 40 projects in Shandong in the past three years. Meanwhile, BOC yesterday signed contracts and letters of intent worth US$662 million with various Shandong municipal governments. BOC will invest US$78.5 million of the total, through China Development Investment (Hongkong) and BOC China Fund, whose respective shares will be US$45.2 million and US$33.3 million. The 17 programmes include 11 contracts, four letters of intent and two agreements. Projects include the development of power stations, investment funds, steel-making companies and other industries in the cities of Qingdao, Yantai, Weihai, and Zibo.