Renault, Nissan Confirm Billion-Dollar India Plant

Plant will produce both companies' vehicles for the Indian market

Nissan Motors and partner Renault have signed an agreement confirming their plan to build a new plant near Chennai in India, Nissan said Feb. 22. The two firms signed a memorandum of agreement with the state government of Tamil Nadu committing them to investing at least $1.14 billion over seven years in the 50:50 joint venture.

The plant is slated to become operational in 2010 to produce Renault and Nissan vehicles for the Indian markets and Nissan vehicles for export. Nissan and Renault previously said they wanted to start selling a car for about $2,500 in India around 2010 along with their local partner there.

"India, one of the fastest-growing car markets and one of the most competitive supply bases in the world, will play a key role in Renault's growing global presence," said Renault executive vice president Patrick Pelata.

Nissan executive vice president Carlos Tavares said: "We are eager to build and deliver products that meet the needs of the Indian market. At the same time, we see India as another export base that will allow Nissan to be competitive in the global supply chain network."

Nissan already has a tie-up with Indian automaker Ashok Leyland to build light trucks and develop auto technologies in India.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2008

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