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Old 02-27-2007, 01:21 PM   #1
NYCshopper
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Default Toyota to build new SUV plant in Mississippi

Toyota to build new SUV plant in Mississippi

http://money.cnn.com/2007/02/27/news...ippi/index.htm

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Toyota to build new SUV plant in Mississippi

New facility will create about 2,000 jobs and produce 150,000 vehicles annually, state says.

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Toyota Motor Corp. will build sport utility vehicles in Mississippi, Governor Haley Barbour announced Tuesday, creating roughly 2,000 jobs and making it the automaker's fifth U.S. assembly plant.

The plant, which will be dedicated to building the Highlander sport utility vehicle, will be located just outside of Tupelo, in Blue Springs, Miss., the governor said.

"We in Mississippi and especially North Mississippi are excited to have been chosen by Toyota as its partner," Barbour said in a prepared statement.

The Toyota plant, which is scheduled to begin production by 2010, will produce approximately 150,000 vehicles every year.

Several states were in the running for the new plant, according to Toyota manufacturing executive vice president Gary Convis, who characterized the competition as "tough."

"Governor Barbour and the regional economic development team were very convincing and unrelenting in their efforts to showcase the area's advantages," Convis said in prepared remarks.

The 1,700-acre Blue Springs plant will be Toyota's fifth vehicle assembly plant in the U.S.

The automaker currently operates vehicle assembly plants in San Antonio, Texas, Princeton, In., Georgetown, Ky., and Fremont, Calif.

Toyota took the No. 2 spot in U.S. auto sales in January, speeding past Ford Motor Co. (Charts) and gaining on top U.S. automaker General Motors (Charts).

Toyota (Charts) shares edged lower in Tuesday trade on the New York Stock Exchange.
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Old 02-27-2007, 03:20 PM   #2
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Toyota's "Born In U.S.A." Blitz Rolls On

http://www.businessweek.com/globalbi...227_584426.htm

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Still wary of anti-foreigner feeling as it overtakes GM, the Japanese carmaker will build a sport-ute plant in Mississippi to further boost local production

And the winner is…Mississippi. It's been a long time coming, but Toyota (TM) has finally decided the location of its eighth North American plant. According to a Feb. 27 press release, Toyota chieftains have chosen Blue Springs, Miss., as the location for a new plant to build Highlander sport-utility vehicles.

The Japanese press claims Toyota chose Mississippi because of low labor costs relative to northern states, its closeness to the company's engine plant in neighboring Alabama, and expectations that population growth will spur demand in the southern U.S. auto market.

The announcement may help deter anti-Toyota feeling in the U.S. At a time when Toyota is closing in on GM (GM) as the world's largest automaker and Detroit is struggling, the Japanese company is wary of tarnishing its image in the U.S. "We constantly need to think about the potential backlash against us," Toyota Chief Executive Officer Katsuaki Watanabe told BusinessWeek on Feb. 16. "It's very important for our company and products to earn citizenship in the U.S. We need to make sure we're accepted (see BusinessWeek.com, 3/5/07, "Talking With Toyota's Top Man")."

Surge in Exports
Toyota will spend $1.3 billion building the factory, with production scheduled to begin in 2010. The new plant—which will have a capacity of 150,000 units—and several other new facilities are expected to raise Toyota's North American production capacity by around 400,000 to 2.2 million.

In addition to the new plant in Mississippi, last fall a new Tundra truck plant went online in Texas, and this spring Subaru Indiana Automotive (SIA) will also begin making Camry sedans. (Toyota owns a stake in SIA parent Fuji Heavy Industries.) Next year, a new Toyota plant in Canada will also begin producing RAV4 crossover SUVs. All told, that should increase the proportion of locally produced Toyota vehicles in North America to around 65% by 2010, compared to 54% in 2006.

More U.S. production will also help Toyota reduce dependency on domestic Japanese production. Despite Toyota's opening numerous overseas plants in recent years, rising global demand has led to a surge in exports, stretching local facilities. Last year Toyota's Japan exports rose by 23.6% to 2,712,541. Overseas production increased by 8.6% to 3,932,186.

Still, another new SUV plant alone won't be a cure-all. One reason is that Toyota's growth in the U.S. has a habit of outstripping the speed with which it can open new plants. Another is that Toyota's recent export surge is partly due to high demand for small, fuel-efficient cars, such as the Japan-built Yaris subcompact. Small wonder, then, that Toyota-watchers say the new Mississippi plant is unlikely to be the company's last.
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Old 02-27-2007, 06:49 PM   #3
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No surprise. They already have a plant in New Mexico. Heck even Mercedes are built in Alabama.
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Old 02-27-2007, 07:50 PM   #4
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At least 'foreign' carmakers are building cars in the US. No wonder few Americans care to support Detroit - less and less of Detroit's cars are made in the US, and more and more 'foreign' cars are.

The question remains though... did Mississippi give too sweet of a deal just to get this plant? How many millions of dollars of tax write-offs did they have to give to get this plant?
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Old 02-27-2007, 08:40 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hazdaz View Post
At least 'foreign' carmakers are building cars in the US. No wonder few Americans care to support Detroit - less and less of Detroit's cars are made in the US, and more and more 'foreign' cars are.

The question remains though... did Mississippi give too sweet of a deal just to get this plant? How many millions of dollars of tax write-offs did they have to give to get this plant?
When you're one of the poorest (per capita) states in the union, the first step is to invest (whatever it takes) in getting your citizens jobs. I doubt it took too much anyway - cheap real estate and cheap labor were probably the main factors. Alabama and Mississippi are becoming the next Detroit thanks to the Japanese companies.
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Old 02-27-2007, 10:39 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by scott_gunn View Post
When you're one of the poorest (per capita) states in the union, the first step is to invest (whatever it takes) in getting your citizens jobs. I doubt it took too much anyway - cheap real estate and cheap labor were probably the main factors. Alabama and Mississippi are becoming the next Detroit thanks to the Japanese companies.
I would tend to agree with you, except for the part I highlighted... it isn't "whatever it takes" because if the deal it too one-sided... like the Mercedes one... the amount of jobs created will almost never counter the amount of lost tax revenue, added burden on the schooling and transportation system and such that some of these companies are being offered. Yes, jobs are GREAT to bring into the state - especially manufacturing jobs - but only up to a point. These companies know that their factories are highly sought-after and many times will totally bilk a down-and-out state.
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Old 02-28-2007, 08:53 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Hazdaz View Post
I would tend to agree with you, except for the part I highlighted... it isn't "whatever it takes" because if the deal it too one-sided... like the Mercedes one... the amount of jobs created will almost never counter the amount of lost tax revenue, added burden on the schooling and transportation system and such that some of these companies are being offered. Yes, jobs are GREAT to bring into the state - especially manufacturing jobs - but only up to a point. These companies know that their factories are highly sought-after and many times will totally bilk a down-and-out state.
The industry that the plants create around them is well worth it though. The Toyota plant in WV may only employ 900 or so in the plant, but the number of vendors and contractors that are constantly doing work for them is in the thousands. It even has spawned 2 suppliers to build plants right down the road.

I read that the incentives to Toyota were no where near the incentives given to Nissan, fyi.

~~Quentin
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