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VW to up 2012-2016 Brazil investment to $4.1 billion

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

German automaker Volkswagen said Thursday it would boost production at a plant in southern Brazil, bringing to $4.1 billion its total investment in the country over the 2012-2016 period.

After talks with President Dilma Rousseff in Brasilia, Thomas Schmall, head of Volkswagen's Brazilian unit, said his firm would invest $236 million to produce a new version of its Golf model at the Sao Jose dos Pinhais facility in Parana state.

"With this new investment, Volkswagen will invest a total of $4.1 billion between 2012 and 2016," he told reporters.

"This decision illustrates Volkswagen's confidence in Brazil, which is increasingly asserting itself as one of the world's major vehicle producers and consumers," said Michael Macht, the company's official in charge of production in Latin America.

Last month Audi, the top-of-the-range carmaker owned by Volkswagen, said it would start producing cars at the Sao Jose dos Pinhais plant from 2015.

Audi said it would invest around $200 million to prepare for production of the Audi Q3 and A3 sedan at the Parana assembly line.

That announcement marks Audi's return to Brazil after it stopped its production in the emerging powerhouse in 2006.

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/131003/vw-2012-2016-brazil-investment-41-billion