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Ribbon Cutting in Kia-ville
Published May 25, 2011
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From Kia, with Love: Korean Greenfield Investment Revives a Community

On Friday, February 26, in a flashy rock concert atmosphere, a much awaited and well attended ribbon cutting ceremony took place at the Kia Motors America (KMA) plant in West Point, Georgia. The plant has been producing Kia Sorento crossovers since November 2009, and, once it reaches maximum production capacity, it will be capable of manufacturing 300,000 vehicles a year. When KMA and the State of Georgia announced the construction of the first Kia plant in North America, the largest in the state’s history, a $1 billion auto assembly and manufacturing plant on 2,259 acres of land in West Point, on March 13, 2006, residents of this small town 80 miles south of Atlanta regarded it as a borderline miracle. Once known for its textile mills, the town’s economy was devastated by the migration of the textile business elsewhere in the 1990s, leading to massive loss of jobs, to the point where West Point was practically becoming a “ghost town.”

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