SEOUL -- South Korea's Kia Motors Corp. sees no problem with its plan to build a 1 billion euro ($1.2 billion) car plant in Slovakia, despite opposition from some landowners, a company official said on Wednesday.
Slovakia, which narrowly edged out Poland in a race for the Kia plant earlier this year, has run into difficulty to acquire land for the plant with landowners demanding higher prices.
The plant will be the new EU member's largest ever greenfield foreign project. Kia is South Korea's second-largest automaker and an affiliate of the country's largest car producer, Hyundai Motor Co.
"We don't see any problem with the project as the Slovakia government has already purchased some 75 percent of land for the plant site and would expropriate the remaining portion from opposing landowners," a senior Kia official, who declined to be identified, told Reuters by telephone.
The Slovakia government, which has pledged to prepare the site for the start of construction work by the end of August, said last week that it might miss the deadline after failing to reach agreement with the landowners.
"We expect the groundwork would be completed by the end of September, given that the portion of land yet to be purchased is very small," the official said, adding that Kia was not considering a compensation claim.