CHANGNYEONG, South Korea (March 6, 2015) — Nexen Tire Corp.'s $1.1 billion plant in Žatec, Czech Republic, should be on stream by 2018, the company disclosed recently as part of a visit by Czech Republic Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka to Nexen's plant in Changnyeong.
The company also confirmed earlier reports that it plans to double the Czech plant's annual capacity at a later date to 12 million units in a second-phase expansion. The plant will employ 1,000 at full capacity.
The parties did not say whether construction has started yet in Žatec, a town of about 20,000 located 50 miles northeast of Prague.
Mr. Sobotka toured Nexen's highly automated Changnyeong plant on Feb. 27 as part of an official state visit to South Korea. His visit also coincided with the anniversary of the signing of the memorandum of understanding between Nexen Tire and the Czech government, Nexen said.
Prior to this announcement, the tire maker had not acknowledged publicly its intention to build the Czech factory.