JAC Motors considers electric car production in Bulgaria

The logo of Anhui Jianghuai Automobile Co (JAC Motors) is pictured at its booth during the Auto China 2016 auto show in Beijing, China April 26, 2016. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon

SOFIA (Reuters) - Chinese automaker JAC Motors is exploring opportunities to start making electric cars in Bulgaria, the Balkan country’s economy ministry said.

“JAC Motors looks at Bulgaria as an entry point to the European markets for the electric-powered cars and buses it is manufacturing,” the ministry said in a statement.

The Black Sea state, the European Union’s poorest member, is hungry for new, sustainable foreign investment after a real estate bubble burst during the financial crisis in 2009.

During a meeting with Bulgarian senior state officials, JAC Motors’ representatives said the company - based in Hefei city in the central Chinese province of Anhui - could in future consider establishing assembling operations in Bulgaria using locally manufactured components.

Bulgaria’s location on the southeastern edge of Europe, near Turkey and bordering Romania, as well as low taxes and labor costs, are helping to attract investment in car parts production.

Reporting by Angel Krasimirov; Editing by Mark Potter