At Russian group GAZ's plant, Volkswagen aims to produce over 100,000 Volkswagen and Skoda cars annually. Volkswagen has submitted a memorandum of intent to the Russian government to confirm its commitment to new manufacturing criteria – as part of a requirement to qualify for a raft of incentives including lower custom tariffs on parts.
Volkswagen's Russia chief Marcus Osegowitsch said in a statement on Thursday said that the group is “highly interested” in further developing its operations for the Russian market.
He described GAZ Group to be a “strong Russian partner familiar with western production and management standards." Western carmakers want to have local Russian partners in a bid to offset a slowdown in developed market sales with emerging market growth.
In turn, the Russian government has been trying to attract auto industry leaders with financial incentives for using local manufacturing facilities and labor.
Foreign carmakers have until Feb. 28 to submit a memorandum of intent to the government stating their plans for Russian manufacturing. Ford Motor Co. and General Motors Co. are included in the companies finalizing plans. [via autonews - sub. required]