published Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

Germany's U.S. ambassador checks out Chattanooga VW plant

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    Germany's U.S. ambassador Peter Ammon on Monday toured Chattanooga's Volkswagen plant and said he's not worried euro zone problems could derail any future expansion of the factory.
    Photo by WRCB-TV Channel 3 /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

Germany's U.S. ambassador on Monday toured Chattanooga's Volkswagen plant and said he's not worried euro zone problems could derail any future expansion of the factory.

"German companies are long-term investors," said ambassador Peter Ammon. "Volkswagen's investment did not stop during the financial crisis. German companies are here for the long haul."

U.S. Rep. Chuck Fleischmann, R-Tenn., who said he invited Ammon to the city, added that VW officials told them they built the plant with room to grow.

"They're exceedingly pleased with the Chattanooga work force," Fleischmann said.

Ammon and the congressman said they lunched with business leaders including those from VW and Wacker Polysilicon, which is investing $1.5 billion in a new Bradley County, Tenn., factory to start production in late 2013.

Ammon, too, cited the importance of educated workers.

"More and more depends on a trained work force," he said, adding the friendliness of local government was a common theme he heard from German business leaders.

Ammon noted the market for VW cars in the U.S. is growing. VW reported last week that its American sales have risen by 25.3 percent for the year through November over 2010.

Jonathan Browning, VW Group of America's chief executive, said last week in Chattanooga the automaker continues to build sales momentum.

"We're continuing the positive trends," he said.

Ammon termed VW's Chattanooga factory "one of the most modern car plants in the world."

"It's top of the line in all respects," he said.

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about Mike Pare...

Mike Pare, the deputy Business editor at the Chattanooga Times Free Press, has worked at the paper for 27 years. In addition to editing, Mike also writes Business stories and covers Volkswagen, economic development and manufacturing in Chattanooga and the surrounding area. In the past he also has covered higher education. Mike, a native of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., received a bachelor’s degree in communications from Florida Atlantic University. he worked at the Rome News-Tribune before ...

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rjanmozkie said...

That's probably another business proposal for Volkswagen and being the largest dealer of vehicles as well as VW parts, they are open for the possible proposal as well. On the other hand, it might be a threat for the auto maker as for additional taxes and business cost in the said place. Anyway, it's about having clear conversation among the ambassador and the auto maker, which would lead to a peaceful and progressive results.

March 5, 2012 at 6:44 p.m.
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