Toyota breaks ground for Mississippi plant

TOYOTA MOTOR CORPORATION (TMC) announced that it held a groundbreaking ceremony in Blue Springs, Mississippi, U.S.A. today (April 18, local time) to mark the start of construction of a new vehicle production plant. On April 1 TMC established Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Mississippi, Inc. (TMMMS), which will operate the new plant.

TMC President Katsuaki Watanabe and TMC Executive Vice President Takeshi Uchiyamada welcomed Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour and other guests at the ceremony.

During the ceremony, Watanabe said, "Our goal for this new plant is to make a positive contribution to the quality of life in local communities and around the state."

The TMMMS plant will be Toyota's eighth vehicle production plant in North America, and from around 2010 will manufacture the Highlander SUV. Following the start of operations at TMMMS, Toyota's North American annual production capacity will rise to 2.17 million vehicles.