SEOUL (Reuters) -- South Korea's Hyundai Motor Group, the world's fifth-largest automaker, said it would spend $73 billion over four years on expanding capacity, building a new headquarters and developing new vehicles.
The conglomerate unveiled the investment plan Tuesday as the government of President Park Geun-hye pushes companies with large cash reserves to spend more on investment, employment and dividend payments.
The group, whose 57 affiliates include automakers Hyundai Motor Co. and Kia Motors Corp., said in a statement it would spend 49.1 trillion won ($44 billion) on capital investment and 31.6 trillion won ($29 billion) on r&d by 2018.
It did not elaborate and it was unclear how much of that investment is already baked into the companies' r&d budgets.
But the announcement came after Hyundai Motor and Kia Motors said they would build factories in Mexico and China over the coming years, signaling a resumption in capacity expansion.
Hyundai Motor and Kia Motors said they would sharply boost spending to develop, for instance, more eco-friendly vehicles and self-driving cars over the next four years.
The group said in a statement some three-quarters of the investment would be made within South Korea, which would "greatly contribute" to re-energizing the local economy.
A large part will likely go into a plot of land that three group units agreed to purchase for 10.55 trillion won, far above the market's estimate.
The group's total investment plan compares with South Korea's national capital investment of 127 trillion won over the past year, central bank data shows.