Japan firm opens P1.3-B PH plant
SPORTING goods maker Shimano Inc. has brought online a 3.5-billion yen (about P1.3 billion) bicycle parts manufacturing plant at the First Philippine Industrial Park in Batangas (FPIP).
According to First Philippine Holdings Corp., which owns the industrial estate, the 106,620-square-meter Shimano facility located on a 2.5-hectare lot was expected to employ 1,000 workers at full operation.
The factory, the construction of which was completed in July 2014, is within a 13-hectare area of FPIP’s 422-hectare industrial park in Sto. Tomas town.
The Shimano Philippines facility, the Japanese firm’s first in the country, will manufacture various bicycle components mainly for the export market.
Shimano is among industry-leading companies that have put up facilities and offices in FPIP, joining B/E Aerospace, Brother, Canon, Honda, Ibiden, Murata, Nestle, Philip Morris and Sunpower.
FPIP is a 70-30 joint venture between the Lopez group’s holding company and Japanese conglomerate Sumitomo Corp.
FPIP early this year received government approval for its 92-hectare expansion project dubbed FPIP Special Economic Zone II.
When the bicycle parts project was announced in January 2014, the Osaka-based Shimano said its subsidiary, Shimano (Singapore) Pte. Ltd., was putting up a factory in the Philippines “in order to enhance its production capabilities for the emerging market.”
The factory was inaugurated earlier this month just as the European Parliament approved the inclusion of the Philippines in the European Union’s Generalized System of Preferences Plus (GSP+) program. Exporting countries covered by the concession program enjoy lower duties for their shipments.
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