JCB Chairman Sir Anthony Bamford has dismissed fears that its new £60 million factory in Brazil will take away jobs from the UK.
The Rocester-headquartered manufacturer has built a 65,000sq ft factory in Sorocaba, near Sao Paulo, to capitalise on the football World Cup in 2014 and the Olympics in 2016.
Sir Anthony spoke of the country’s government ‘spending a lot money’ and the great export opportunities for UK companies.
JCB has had presence in South America for 10 years, initially producing 100 machines a year, they now manufacture around 3,000 machines per year.
The new plant is expected to generate more than £100 million of orders a year for components manufactured in Rocester, Wrexham and Foston.
Earlier this year JCB received an order of more than £60 million from the Brazilian Government to build 1,016 backhoe loaders to be used to improve Brazil’s road infrastructure.
Sir Anthony said: “South America represents a huge opportunity for growth and our investment in a new factory is critical to building on the success we already enjoy in this important market.”
He added: “There are £20 billion worth of infrastructure improvements scheduled in Brazil and the new factory will enable us to capitalise on those projects.”
Prime Minister David Cameron opened the factory in Sorocaba yesterday and was led on a guided tour by Sir Anthony.
The Prime Minister visited the factory, which will boost JCB’s production in the country to 10,000 machines a year, as part of his ongoing trade mission to Brazil.
Mr Cameron said: “JCB’s expansion in Brazil shows how British companies can capitalise on the opportunities for growth in Brazil, creating new opportunities in JCB factories in Derbyshire and Wales.
“This is a great example of Britain’s engineering prowess and reflects that the UK is a world leader in innovation and technology.”
The Brazilian plant will employ 200 people and will make backhoe loaders, tracked excavators, wheel loading shovels, Loadall telescopic handlers and compaction equipment.