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Yokohama opens Indian car tire plant

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(Yokohama Rubber Co. Ltd. photo) Takeshi Fujino is managing director of Yokohama India Pvt. Ltd.

BAHADURGARH, India (Feb. 26, 2014) — Yokohama Rubber Co. Ltd. (YRC) has inaugurated production at its $50 million consumer tire plant in Bahadurgarh and will scale production throughout 2014 to the phase-one capacity of 2,000 tires a day.

The plant, under construction since 2012, sits on a 25-acre site in Haryana State west of Delhi. It started production with more than 100 "direct" employees, Yokohama said, a figure that will triple before year-end.

The tire maker plans to quadruple the factory's output to 8,000 tires a day in subsequent phases of growth, according to Takeshi Fujino, managing director of Yokohama India Pvt. Ltd. The company will complement local production with continued imports, he added.

Among the products to be produced at the plant are Yokohama's Earth-1 tire line, designed to cater to the comfort and economy segments, along with S. drive line.

On hand to commemorate the plant's opening were: Shri Bhupiner Singh, Hooda, chief minister of Haryana; Takeshi Yagi, ambassador of Japan in Indial; Tarun Bajaj, managing director of HSIIDC; Rajinder Joon, MLA – Bahadurgarh; and Shigeru Kagami, corporate officer, YRC.

Mr. Fujino said the Earth-1 tire is appropriate for India's diverse road conditions, catering to the country's B, B+ and C-segment cars.

Yokohama India goes to market through about 600 points of sale, including 22 Yokohama Club Network locations.

The company originally envisioned having this plant open years earlier, but construction was delayed because of the fallout of the 2008 global economic recession, the company said in 2012.

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