HAI PHONG CITY, Vietnam (July 2, 2012) — Bridgestone Corp. has broken ground on its $457 million radial car tire plant in Hai Phong City, whose production will be destined primarily for export to Europe, North America and Japan.
Manufacturing is expected to start by March 2014, Bridgestone said, although the plant won't be completed until the first half of 2016. Annual production capacity will be 24,700 tires per day with 1,900 employees.
Despite spending hundreds of millions to expand plants in Nong Khae, Thailand, and Karawang, Indonesia, to supply export markets, Bridgestone said it determined that a new plant in Vietnam was necessary in order to respond to the continuing growth in demand.
The plant is situated on an 11-million-sq.-ft. plot of land in Hai Phong City's Dinh Vu Industrial Zone.
The ground-breaking ceremony was attended by Hoang Trung Hai, deputy prime minister of Socialist Republic of Viet Nam, other government officials and the company's business partners, Kazuhisa Nishigai, COO and representative board member of Bridgestone, and Susumu Yazaki, president of Bridgestone Tire Manufacturing Vietnam L.L.C.
“The Bridgestone Group looks forward to contributing to economic growth in Vietnam and Hai Phong City through this new operation, as well as providing employment for its citizens and cultivating new skills in our employees that will position them for future success,” Mr. Nishigai said.