Samsung Elec building $380 mn home appliance factory in Newberry

Samsung to open $380 million appliance manufacturing plant in Newberry County

Samsung's planned home appliance manufacturing facility in Newberry County, South Carolina, will create 954 local jobs by 2020.

The South Korean-based company is opening a "state-of-the-art" facility in the former Caterpillar plant in Newberry. When the factory is up and running, it will employ workers in various roles, including craftsmen, operators, engineers and other technical and nontechnical positions. "The facility will produce premium home appliances including washing machines from early next year".

On its website, the South Korean company said the investment decision was driven by the high-skilled workforce in SC, the state's record in attracting and retaining other global businesses, "strong local government leadership" and strong highway and port facilities.

Samsung and LG washers made outside the country are now under safeguard investigation by the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) upon compliant by U.S. washer maker Whirlpool that had lost its top position in the U.S. washing machine market to Samsung Electronics.

"It is a reflection of the fact that America became a destination of choice for worldwide companies who are seeking to expand", said u.s. Commerce secretary, Wilbur Ross, in a press release. The company ultimately selected the Newberry County site for its high-skilled workforce, robust supply chain and transportation infrastructure and commitment to public-private partnerships. In February, Trump tweeted, "Thank you, @Samsung!" "The newly built factory will be a basis for long-term growth in the world's largest home appliance market", the company said in a statement.

The state's Coordinating Council for Economic Development also has approved job development credits for the project.

Industry watchers said the latest investment projects are significant as U.S. President Donald Trump has been pushing toward protectionism, which centers on generating jobs inside the U.S. This stance has been viewed as a major source of concern for South Korean firms seeking business opportunities there. "We have a long manufacturing history here in Newberry County, and this writes a whole new chapter". "Their announcement is very significant to the Port, and it reflects our ability to meet the global supply chain needs of major worldwide manufacturers".

Caterpillar announced a year ago it would shutter its 325-worker Newberry plant by late 2017 and move the work Texas, Indiana and Georgia under a cost-cutting plan.

Established in 1969 and employing almost half a million people worldwide, Samsung manufactures TVs, smartphones, wearable devices, cameras, digital appliances, network systems and more.

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