TOKYO (March 28, 2012) — Yokohama Rubber Co. Ltd. (YRC) will build a passenger tire plant in India that it expects to be in production by July 2014.
Yokohama is building the $53 million plant on a 25-acre site in Haryana State west of Delhi that it acquired four years ago. The plant will have an initial annual capacity of 700,000 tires.
Yokohama India Pvt. Ltd., a sales company set up in 2007, will oversee the plant once it's operational, YRC said. Construction of the plant was delayed because of the fallout of the 2008 global economic recession, YRC said.
The company it expects employment in India to hit 350 once the plant is open.
Yokohama did not disclose sales expectations for the India market but did say sales of new cars reached approximately 3 million cars last year. By 2020, the market is expected to exceed 7 million cars to become the third largest car market in the world.
The company said it is making an effort to expand sales in India by creating an image of a high-grade brand tire through placing an emphasis on high performance and high quality that characterize Yokohama-brand tires.
The plant will be YRC's 14th worldwide and is part of the company's plans to add as much as 20 million units of new annual production capacity worldwide in the 2014-17 period. YRC earlier said it is committing upwards of $1.75 billion to that end.
Yokohama also has expansion projects under way at plants in Russia, China, Philippines and Thailand.
Yokohama also is looking at building an as-yet undisclosed number of plants, with sites in North and South America and China under consideration.