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One of Japan's biggest tire manufacturers will invest another $138 million and add 150 more jobs at its North American production facility in North Georgia.

Toyo Tire North America announced Tuesday it is planning a two-phase expansion that would ultimately increase its employment in Georgia to 2,100 workers and boost its production capacity by another 2.4 million passenger vehicle tires.

Toyo Tires will construct another 254,000-square-foot facility in Bartow County in the next year and add jobs in production, support and administration.

"The level of cooperation from the state of Georgia and Bartow County over the years continues to exceed our expectations," said Don Bunn, president of Toyo Tire North America Manufacturing Inc., in White, Georgia, where the 73-year-old Japanese tire maker established its U.S. operations in 2006.

In 2016, Toyo Tire North America Manufacturing Inc. became the Toyo Tires Group's largest manufacturing operation with an annual production capacity of 11.5 million tires.

"As the No. 1 state for business, Georgia offers the strategic resources necessary to retain dynamic companies and support industry leaders in long-term growth," Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal said in a statement Tuesday. "Toyo Tires is a valued member of Georgia's family of innovative automotive manufacturers and suppliers."

Toyo Tires manufacturing facility began operations 12 years ago with its Advanced Tire Operation Module production system. The White, Georgia location was chosen to enhance distribution and inventory availability for Toyo and Nitto tires sold through Toyo Tires' network of retailers.

Toyo is one of two international tire manufacturers expanding in the Chattanooga region. The Finland-based Nokian Tyres is building a $360 million tire manufacturing plant in Dayton, Tennessee, which is expected to start making tires in the second half of 2019. The Dayton plant on 135 acres north of Dayton wlll employ 400 workers.

Contact Dave Flessner at dflessner@timesfreepress.com or at 757-6340.

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