Linglong to choose site for plant in Central Europe
China’s Shandong Linglong Tyre is close to deciding on the site of an expected €500 million ($559 million) tyre plant in Central Europe, a partner of the company told media this week. The tyre maker has narrowed site selection down to Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland, and will make a decision in the coming months, said Radek Grill, owner of the Czech online tyre business Nejlevnejsipneu.cz, for which Linglong produces tyres. Linglong has been looking to build another site outside of China after opening a $700 million plant in Thailand in 2015.
It widened its search in Central Europe to the Czech Republic after talks with Grill, Linglong’s president, Wang Feng, said in an interview with Czech media. The executive said Linglong would choose a site within three months. The new plant is expected to employ 1,500 and would supply Linglong’s European markets, sources said. The car sector is growing in Central Europe, although worries are starting to surface concerning a labor shortage in several markets that is pushing up wages. Hungary is already home to tyre plants for Hankook and Apollo. Nexen is expected to launch in the Czech Republic in 2018.