Groundbreaking held for Giti Tire’s US plant
An event was held yesterday to mark the official start of work on Giti Tire’s new facility in the USA. Local and company dignitaries, including Giti Tire executive chairman Enki Tan, were present at the Chester County site in South Carolina to mark the groundbreaking with a ceremonial shovelful of soil.
Enki Tan said the erection of Giti Tire’s US$560 million plant is a “big, complicated project” but expressed confidence in the team assigned to realise the tyre maker’s aim to locally meet regional demand for passenger car and light truck tyres and stated that Giti Tire is “so very happy to call Chester home.” A five million tyre per annum capacity is planned for the 1,800,000 square foot (16,700 square metre) factory and distribution centre in its first phase, which is expected to be complete in 2017, however the tyre maker has already said further capacity increases are anticipated and will be implemented as demand dictates.
Giti Tire has been embraced by Chester County as something of a saviour. The area has experienced unemployment reaching upwards of 20 per cent, and one local publication comments that Chester County was previously a “self-described bridesmaid for many major economic development projects.” Once complete, the Giti Tire plant will directly employ some 1,700 people and attract further investment in the area; summing up local feeling towards the factory project, county supervisor Carlisle Roddy opined that “the face of Chester will never be the same.”