By Georgie Hay, Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Nissan Motor Company is preparing to invest R$750 million in a new factory to be built in Resende generating 600 new jobs for the state of Rio de Janeiro. On the site, the company’s new crossover model, Nissan Kicks, will be built to be sold globally, with Rio de Janeiro being the hub for export within Latin America.
The president of Nissan Brazil, Francois Dossa, explained why the company chose the automotive hub of Rio de Janeiro to produce and export the cars in Latin America in the coming years;
“We installed the plant in the second industrial center of Brazil, a region that is becoming a reference to the domestic industry,” explains Dossa. “Resende now has available infrastructure for the installation of industries, excellent location between the major economic centers of the country and human capital quality. Contributing to bringing more investment, creating jobs and actively participating in the local society.”
Since April 2014, Nissan has produced the compact models March and Versa. With the manufacture of Kicks, a vehicle inspired by Brazilian culture, Nissan will generate new employment prospects at the Resende plant for those in the surrounding areas.
Resende is a municipality in the south west of Rio de Janeiro, bordering São Paulo and Minas Gerais, and has a population of just 125,000. Yet the state government provides incentives to companies that settle in the region. In addition, authorities say there are a number of other benefits such as skilled labor, infrastructure, location and proximity to suppliers.
“The state has one of the largest national consumer markets, as well as port and road infrastructure, proximity of São Paulo and Minas Gerais and skilled labor,” says Mark Capute, the secretary of Economic Development, Energy, Industry and Services. “These features make Rio de Janeiro attractive for the installation of automotive industry.”
While the investment is an encouraging sign for the region and the industry, according to data by FENABRAVE (National Federation of Automotive Distributors), automotive sales in Brazil fell by 25.59 percent in 2015 in comparison to the previous year, and for the sector as a whole, including trucks and buses, the annual decline was of 21.85 percent.
“Not even the promotional actions [are] able to reduce the negative impacts of the crisis, which affects jobs and the confidence of those who live, invest and consume in the country,” said FENABRAVE president, Alarico Assumpção Júnior, when announcing the results on Wednesday (January 6th).