MOSCOW (Reuters) - General Motors Co. is reviewing the timing of the expansion of its Russian plant near St Petersburg because of a slump in the country's auto market.
GM opened the $300 million factory in 2008 and planned to launch the second stage in 2015. The plant currently builds Chevrolet Cruze, Opel Astra, and Chevrolet Trailblazer models.
"In view of the current business situation in Russia and the lower sales volumes since the start of the year, we are taking a close look at our plans. As part of this, we are also reviewing the timing of our expansion plans at the GM Auto Plant in St Petersburg," a GM spokesman said today.
The company has not disclosed which models the second stage of the plant would produce. In 2012, GM laid out plans to raise annual production capacity in St. Petersburg to 230,000 vehicles by next year.
On Thursday, GM said it was to reduce production at the plant to four days a month in August and September, extending to eight in October.
Car sales have faltered in Russia this year as economic growth has slowed, causing people to put off large purchases. Consumer sentiment has come under further pressure because of Western sanctions over the crisis in Ukraine.