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Friday, November 03, 2006

PM to lay foundation stone for auto R&D centre

National newsPrime Minister Manmohan Singh will lay the foundation stone for the Rs 400 crore National Automotive Testing and Research and Development Infrastructure project at Oragadam near Sriperumbudur, about 45 km from here, tomorrow.

Oragadam, a remote area near the temple town, will turn into a auto hub when Dr Singh lays the foundation stone for the prestigious project in the presence of Congress President Sonia Gandhi and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi.

The project is coming up at the industrial estate being exclusively developed by the state-owned SIPCOT in an area of over 2000 acre for automobile and ancillary units.

It was during the inaugural function of the Sethusamudram Project in Madurai on July two, 2005, that Dr Singh, in the presence of Ms Gandhi and Mr Karunanidhi, announced that the project would be established at a cost of Rs 400 crore in Oragadam.

The state government had earmarked an extent of about 300 acre in the SPICOT estate for establishing the project.

Dr Singh, in the presence of Ms Gandhi, Mr Karunanidhi and Union Minister for Communication and Information Technology Dayanidhi Maran, will also inaugurate Flextronics at Sriperumbudur. The Nasdaq-listed Flextronics had signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the state government to build an industrial park at Sriperumbudur in an area of 250 acre.

The company has proposed to begin printed circuit board assembly operations initially and after a couple of months, the plant would see end-products rollout. Products to be manufactured included mobile phone handsets, telecom infrastructure equipment like base stations and set-top boxes for the direct-to-home TV services market.

It would have the capacity to make two million mobile phone handsets a month. Currently, the company's Pondicherry facility had the capacity to produce 500,000 handsets. Its Bangalore plant focused on telecom infrastructure equipment, company sources said.

Flextronics would employ about 1,500 people in its new plant on 10 acre of the total 250 acre in the initial phase, they said.


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