PSA Peugeot Citroen Ups Slovakia Output

Will increase production by 10%

France's car maker PSA Peugeot Citroen said on March 1 it had produced 205,000 units at its Slovak plant in 2009, raising its output by 10% against the previous year despite the global downturn.

The former communist economy driven by car and electronics production has been hit hard by the global slump in demand.

Car makers with production lines in Slovakia, including Volkswagen, PSA Peugeot Citroen and Kia Motors have tried to offset low demand by focusing on small, low-emission vehicles.

"The global crisis has changed customers' preferences, they started to focus on green low-emission and low-consumption cars," spokesman Peter Svec said.

"Demand was driven also by different 'cash-for-clunkers' schemes introduced at key markets in Germany, Italy, France, Spain as well as Slovakia," he added.

The company produces two models -- Peugeot 207 and Citroen C3 Picasso -- at its plant based in western Slovakia, which employs 3,000 people.

In 2008, it produced 186,397 cars, up from 177,586 units in 2007.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2010

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