Toyota Plant to be Built in Mississippi

By: RyanThomas

Toyota is expanding their scope of production in the US and the location for their next facility was hotly contested. But the results are in and Toyota has finally announced that their eighth plant in North America will be built in Blue Springs, Mississippi.

The assembly plant will be operational by the year 2010 and it promises to employ 2,000 workers from in and around the area. This is aside from the thousands of jobs that will be created indirectly by the plant. The plant will be located in a 1,700-acre site just outside Tupelo and once it is fully operational, the facility can produce 150,000 vehicles every year. The particular vehicle that will be produced in the upcoming assembly plant is the company's sport utility vehicle Highlander.

Toyota announced the good news to the public along with Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour, Senators Thad Cochran and Trent Lott, and Congressman Roger Wicker. For Toyota, Executive Vice Presidents Gary Convis and Ray Tanguay were present at the announcement.

Governor Barbour said that: "We in Mississippi and especially North Mississippi are excited to have been chosen by Toyota as its partner. Toyota is the world's premiere auto manufacturer and our state will be the best partner the company has." Senator Trent Lott even added that: "We're honored that Toyota has chosen to invest in our state and grow with Mississippians. This is a partnership between one of the world's best companies, and a state which has already proven itself capable of attracting the world's top defense, automotive, and aerospace jobs."

Convis also addressed the media at the news conference held to announce the good news. He emphasized on Toyota's dedication to balance rapid growth and maintaining their company's reputation for superior quality standards. He also cited the upcoming production of the Toyota Tundra in their San Antonio plant and of the Toyota Camry at the Subaru plant located in Lafayette, Indiana. In connection with their company putting up a plant in the region, he said: "We are excited for the opportunity to do business in Mississippi and are confident the team members here will have a commitment to perform at the highest possible level. Governor Barbour and the regional economic development team were very convincing and unrelenting in their efforts to showcase the area's advantages".

It can be remembered that the competition for the location of the new Toyota plant in North America. In the end, the $1.3 billion investment went to Mississippi. Executive Vice President Ray Tanguay cited the reason for the selection of the site in his statement. "On my visits to Northern Mississippi, I have talked with area companies and observe their workforce. What I observed were people who are educated, ethical and friendly with a strong work ethic- a perfect match for the Toyota Way". Tanguay also stated that what he observed made him think of them as "definitely the best sales people".

Tanguay added that the effort put into the partnership by the region's government and private sector played a major role in their choosing of the site as the location of their fifth plant in the United States. "The partnership of all these groups was instrumental to our decision, including the creation of a new rail district to provide competitive rail access for the plant," he quips.

The site will be prepared for the construction of the plant by spring of this year. When completed, the plant will perform stamping, body welding, plastics, painting, and the assembly of Toyota vehicles. Surely, the plant will be of great help to the economy of the region, just like a is beneficial to an engine.

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