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Friday, Dec 22, 2006

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Volvo shifting Europe truck work to India

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To set up bus manufacturing plant near Bangalore

Shifting gear
Work from plants in Sweden and Belgium will be shifted
Indian plants
to focus on supplying to European countries

LAUNCH TIME: Mr Eric Leblanc (left), Managing Director, Volvo India and Mr Clauss Fox, Vice-President, Industry, Volvo India, at the launch of Volvo FM 400 8X4 tipper near Hosakote on Thursday. -- G.R.N Somashekar

Bangalore , Dec. 21

Volvo will shift some of the truck manufacturing work from Europe to India and build its bus manufacturing plant near Bangalore.

The Volvo India's Managing Director, Mr Eric Leblanc, told presspersons at the company's plant at Hoskote near here that during the course of the next year, some of the manufacturing work from plants in Sweden and Belgium will be shifted here. In turn, these plants will focus more on supplying trucks to the European countries. Due to capacity constraints in Asian plants, some of the demand is met from the plants in Europe.

Mr Leblanc said over a period of time, the Indian plant will double the production capacity to around 2,400 units per year to meet the demand from Asian countries like Indonesia and Vietnam. Exports to China, where Volvo already has a joint venture, will be undertaken at later..

The Indian plant already exports trucks to South Korea and Bangladesh. Mr Leblanc said no additional investment was required for doubling the capacity of the existing plant. Currently, nearly 4,000 Volvo trucks are sold in Asia.

He said Volvo will also hire more workers from the existing 150 blue-collar workers while the work shift will be increased to two. The R&D work done out of India will also be raised with the addition of 100 more engineers, while the software development work will be increased to 500 consultants.

The bus manufacturing plant will also be set up near the existing plant at Hoskote and will start operations from 2008. It will have a capacity to manufacture 1,000 bus bodies a year.

The bus manufacturing business will be a joint venture with Jaico Automobiles, with Volvo holding 70 per cent in the venture.

Volvo also announced the launch of its new FM 400 tipper, which costs around Rs 63 lakh.

During this calendar year, Volvo is expected to sell over 600 trucks.

Related Stories:
Volvo Bus to set up new jt venture in India
Volvo, Jaico ink pact to start jt venture for bus body production
Volvo India to increase capacity utilisation

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