Hyundai said on Sept. 3 that its first European plant sited in the Czech Republic could start production several months early, in late December or early January.
"The original plan was for March 2009 but it could be late December or early January," said Hyundai spokesman Petr Vanek, adding that the 990 million euro (US$1.44 billion) plant awaits final safety and other clearances.
The Nosovice plant, near the eastern industrial city of Ostrava, will produce 200,000 cars a year in a first phase, rising to 300,000 by 2011 after a further 130 million euro investment. The plant is earmarked to make the i30 model currently produced in South Korea. The Czech plant will supply European markets.
Around 1,500 workers have already been recruited for the Czech plant with a further 500 due to be hired by the end of the year. At full production, 3,400 should be working there.
Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2008