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United States Inward Investing Guide

United States Inward Investing Guide

Location USA is a guide for international companies looking to invest or establish operations within the United States. Location USA provides practical advice and guidance about facilities deployment, labor force skills, taxes and incentives, and more. For specific information on all 50 states, utilize the State Resources links.

Hot United States FDI Sectors: Automotive

Mark Crawford (Location USA 2012)
Automotive has long anchored U.S. manufacturing and continues to attract billions in FDI, especially in the Southeast. It's not just traditional car building either - big automotive projects also include green, alternatively powered vehicles. Dozens of new plants and expansions across the United States are energizing communities by creating thousands of new, good-paying jobs.

In Kentucky, for example, economic development tripled in 2010-2011. Vehicle manufacturing led the way, including some large FDI projects. In Louisville, French company Faurecia Interior Systems is investing about $33 million for a plant that will employ 425 workers. Other FDI automotive projects in the state are ZF Steering Systems ($95.8 million, 374 jobs) and Metalsa Structural Products ($25.1 million, 668 jobs). Hitachi Automotive also plans to spend $74.5 million for a plant in Berea to manufacture electric drive motors for next-generation electric and hybrid electric vehicles, creating 130 jobs. The Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority provided Hitachi with $4 million in tax incentives through the Kentucky Business Investment Program.

Ohio has also been successful in landing foreign automotive projects. Canada-based Vehtek Systems is investing $100 million to expand its facility in Bowling Green. In the southern part of the state, Japan-based USUI International Corporation is constructing a $15.9 million plant in Sharonville to produce tubing for gas direct injection systems. The 120,000-square-foot facility will employ 180 people by 2013. Incentives include an enterprise zone tax benefit and 15-year tax exemption on identified project improvements.

Not all foreign automotive investment is in the Southeast or mid-central United States - locations in the West can still compete. Most recently, thanks to its green focus and high-tech prowess, Los Angeles was recently selected for the headquarters of environmentally friendly Chinese car and battery maker BYD. The move will create about 150 new engineering and management jobs.
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