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MG Rover plans tranfer of 75 production to Poland – reports

MG Rover will not confirm reports in Polish and other media that it has submitted a £700m bid for Daewoo-FSO with a view to transferring 75 model assembly there for 2005.

MG Rover told am-online today that negotiations had not been completed with the creditors of Daewoo-FSO, and accordingly, the company would not comment on reports that it planned to build the 75 series in Poland – where labour costs are some 20% lower than the EU 15 average.

A Polish business paper Business Journal and the automotive section of Spanish paper El Mundo have reported that MG Rover had submitted a £700 million bid for control of the insolvent Daewoo-FSO operation, which is still building Daewoo cars in small volumes, though not part of the revived GM Daewoo company. The Polish paper speculated that for lack of cash to fund the deal on its own, MG Rover might be bidding for Daewoo-FSO in partnership with US-based venture capitalist CWC Partners. 'Offshoring' MG/Rover 75 series production would not only dismay Longbridge employees and unions, but also represent a third shift of assembly location, which started off at the Oxford plant where MINI is now built by BMW, before moving to Longbridge.

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