WARSAW, Poland -- General Motors will upgrade its Polish factory to produce the Astra II model, raising the plant's exports by about $200 million a year to $600 million, a GM spokesman told Reuters on Tuesday.
Przemyslaw Byszewski said the carmaker would invest an unspecified amount within an "offset" investment package organised as part of Lockheed Martin's $3.5 billion sale of fighter planes to Poland's air force.
"Exports of the Astra II alone will be about $200 million a year, so together with the Agila (already in production) total exports will be around $600 million," Byszewski said.
The government has said the Lockheed-backed package, which it discusses later today, will be worth $6-12 billion, but analysts say the use of "multipliers" to value investments in favoured sectors makes the headline figure meaningless.
Earlier on Tuesday Poland's foreign investment agency said total foreign investment in 2002 fell to $6.1 billion from $7.1 billion in 2001.
Since 1996, GM has invested about $800 million in Poland, in ventures including the Opel factory in the southern Polish town of Gliwice.