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Chinese Company Plans Hybrid Auto Plant in Alabama

China-headquartered Hybrid Kinetic (HK) Motors has announced plans to build a hybrid car factory in Bay Minette, Alabama, with a potential for 5,000 jobs by 2014. The Montgomery Advertiser reports that the company must raise $1.5 billion to start the project, and while state officials express optimism about the potential economic impact on the Alabama economy, they also caution that the project is still a long way from reality, with Alabama Governor Bob Riley telling the Advertiser that there are "no guarantees" the factory will be built. If HK Motors is able to secure the necessary financing, the factory is slated to produce low-fuel hybrid vehicles that will run on a combination of natural gas and electric power and could use gasoline if necessary. The company says it plans to manufacture up to 300,000 vehicles per year by 2013 and as many as 1 million per year by 2018. State officials say that discussions about incentives for the company will be tabled until the project is in a position to move ahead.

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