Volvo plant in China's Chengdu to start operating in 2013-source

BEIJING Fri Feb 18, 2011 2:22am EST

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BEIJING Feb 18 (Reuters) - Volvo Car Corp's planned auto plant in southwestern China is scheduled to begin operating in 2013 with annual capacity of 125,000 units, a person with direct knowledge of the matter said on Friday.

The facility, to be located on the outskirts of Chengdu in Sichuan province, will make mid-sized Volvo cars as well as vehicles transferred from Ford's China car plant in the nearby Chongqing municipality, the person told Reuters.

Volvo, owned by Zhejiang Geely Holding Group, plans to increase local production in China to 200,000 units by 2015.

It will also look further into opportunities to set up manufacturing facilities in the Shanghai area in eastern China and in Daqing in the northeast, said the person.

Geely, parent of Geely Automobile Holdings (0175.HK), took over Volvo from Ford Motor (F.N) in August 2010, marking China's largest overseas auto acquisition.

Ford in 2006 started to make the Volvo S60 at its Chongqing plant, jointly operated with Chongqing Changan Automobile Co 000625.SZ and Mazda Motor (7261.T), and later added the Volvo S40 to its portfolio.

(Reporting by Fang Yan and Ken Wills)

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