Kia Motors invests $1.1 billion for first Indian factory

Signs of a KIA Motor car dealership are pictured in Monterrey, Mexico, August 23, 2016. REUTERS/Daniel Becerril

South Korean carmaker Kia Motors Corp signed a deal on Thursday to invest about $1.1 billion to build its first factory in India, aiming to tap a fast growing market at a time when its China sales are sagging.

The Hyundai Motor Co affiliate posted a 19 percent slump in first-quarter net profit as anti-Korean sentiment and a conflict with dealers hit its China sales, sending its shares down 2.2 percent in a flat market.

Production at the factory in Anantapur district, Andhra Pradesh state, would begin in the second half of 2019, the company said.

Kia is expected to leverage Hyundai’s supply chain network built around its factories in the neighboring state of Tamil Nadu to gain a foothold in the Indian market, tipped to become the world’s third-largest by 2020. Hyundai is India’s No.2 automaker by sales.


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