French automaker Renault SA said Wednesday it was raising its investments in Brazil by 500 million Brazilian reais ($285 million) to increase annual production capacity by 100,000 cars.
The new investment will add 1,000 workers to Renault’s current Brazil workforce of 6,000.
The BRL500 million investment is in addition to BRL1 billion already announced for the 2010-2015 period, and will boost capacity at the company’s Brazil plant to 380,000 vehicles a year the automaker said.
According to its CEO Ghosn, Renault plans to launch 13 new vehicles in the country and increase its dealership network.
“In order to be successful in Brazil, you have to invest in Brazil,” Ghosn said, adding that he hopes to attract parts suppliers to the country in order to boost local content in their cars.
The investments also provide for the creation of a genuine engineering centre close to the production plants, whereas, today, the engineering personnel and establishments (Renault Technologies Americas – RTA) are spread around the industrial complex.
Renault Brasil is to open a training centre and new centres for logistics in order to make more rational use of storage areas.
Ghosn says that the expanded plant is part of Renault SA’s strategy to make Brazil the company’s largest market after France by 2013.
He says that by that year Renault wants to have global sales of 3 million vehicles, one-fourth of which will be made in Brazil.
The company has three plants in the Ayrton Senna complex at Curitiba: a passenger car plant, an LCV plant and an engine plant.