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vw poznanIn a festive ceremony which took place on November 13th, Volkswagen laid the foundation stone for the new plant in Września near Poznań in the presence of representatives from the Volkswagen Group, the Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles brand and guests from the Polish government and local authorities.

Here is where the next model of the Volkswagen Crafter will be built starting in the second half of 2016.
 
 Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles - Foundation stone ceremony for new plant in Poland enlargeVolkswagen Commercial Vehicles - Foundation stone ceremony for new plant in Poland (from left): 1. His Excellency Archbishop Dr Stanisław Gądecki from Poznań, 2. Piotr Florek, Voivode of the Wielkopolska Voivodeship, 2. Michael Kleiss, Plant Manager Crafter Września, 4. Dr. Josef Baumert, Member of the Board Management of the Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles Brand with responsibility for Production and Logistics, 5. Marek Woźniak, Marshal of the Wielkopolska Voivodeship, 6. Dr. Eckhard Scholz, Chairman of the Board of Management of the Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles Brand, 7. Jens Ocksen, Head of the Board of Management of Volkswagen Poznań, 8. Dr. Leif Östling, Member of the Board of Management of Volkswagen AG with responsibility for Commercial Vehicles, 9. Elke Eller, Member of the Board of Management of the Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles Brand with responsibility for Human Resources, 10. Piotr Olbrys, Chairman of the Trade Union Volkswagen Poznań, 11. Janusz Piechociński, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Economic Affairs of Poland, 12. Tomasz Kaluzny, Mayor of Września, 13. Dionizy Jasniewicz, District Chief Executive of Września.

Dr Leif Östling, Member of the Board of Management of Volkswagen AG with responsibility for Commercial Vehicles, Dr Eckhard Scholz, Chairman of the Board of Management of the Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles Brand and Jens Ocksen, Head of the Board of Management of Volkswagen Poznań, welcomed more than 200 guests to the event. Among the guests who attended were Janusz Piechociński, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Economic Affairs of Poland, Marek Woźniak, Marshal of the Wielkopolska Voivodeship and his Excellency Archbishop Dr Stanisław Gądecki. The signed articles of association sealed in a "time capsule" were immured together with the foundation stone.

"As a result of this investment the work force of the Volkswagen Group in Poland will grow to over 16,000 employees in the next few years. This will increase the importance of Poland as an international automobile location," said Dr Leif Östling during the foundation stone ceremony.

The new plant will be built at Września about 50 kilometres east of Poznań. The building site covers an area of 220 hectares, which is equivalent to a size of over 300 football fields. At present, the first construction work is under way to level and pave the site. The first vehicles will leave the assembly line in 2016.

"Today, we produce around 170,000 vehicles with almost 7,000 workers not only for Poland but for the whole of Europe and beyond," said Dr Eckhard Scholz. "This makes Volkswagen Poznań the second pillar for the brand – after the main assembly plant in Hannover. In future, this pillar will provide more support and therefore the foundation stone is laid today in the literal sense of the word. By a new plant and by a new vehicle," continued Scholz.

The first VW Crafter vehicles will be delivered starting in the second half of 2016. It is planned to achieve an annual production capacity of up to 100,000 vehicles.

A modern paint shop will be built on the plant site as well as halls for body assembly, vehicle assembly and a supplier park with logistics areas.

Up to 3,000 employees will work in the new plant. Volkswagen's investment will also help automotive suppliers create new jobs. At present, the percentage of parts supplied to the VW plant in Poznań by Polish companies is over 40 per cent.

Jens Ocksen, Chairman of the Board of Management of Volkswagen Poznań, stressed the advantages which will result from locating the new plant in the vicinity of the existing plant in Poznań. This applies to production, logistics, supplier companies as well as to the recruitment of new skilled workers: "Września offers us the best economic, infrastructural and labour market conditions. Building the plant in Biełężyce near Września is a key element in implementing the strategic and global aims of the Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles brand," said Ocksen.

Janusz Piechociński, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Economic Affairs, had this to say about the decision to locate the plant in Poland: "Locating the Volkswagen project in Poland is proof that Poland remains an attractive location for investment. The foundation stone ceremony today is also the start, I hope, of long-term prospects for local companies which can provide high-quality services.

After the Volkswagen plant in Poznań-Antoninek, the new plant in Września is the second production location of Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles in Poland. The company Volkswagen Poznań has been in existence for over 20 years. Here the Volkswagen Caddy city delivery van and the Volkswagen Transporter have been built for the past 10 years for markets all over the world.
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