General Motors opens its 1st Russian factory

Associated Press - November 7, 2008 9:54 AM ET

ST. PETERSBURG, Russia (AP) - General Motors Corp. has opened its first Russian assembly plant.

The $300 million, 70,000-car-a-year factory that was dedicated Friday just outside of St. Petersburg is a bright spot for the staggering automotive giant.

This plant is GM's first in Russia, where demand for cheap, well-built cars has exploded amid a decade-long economic boom.

GM already produces 100,000 cars a year through Russian joint ventures.

The St. Petersburg region has become a mecca for foreign car manufacturers. Ford and Toyota have opened plants there and Nissan, Hyundai and Suzuki will also be launching production soon.

GM is having 1 of the worst years in its history and is expected to release a gloomy third quarter earnings report on Friday.

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