Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borisov, Energy and Economy Minister Delyan Dobrev and Sheila Camerer, Ambassador of the Republic of South Africa to Bulgaria, opened Tuesday a plant for luxury seats and interior for BMW cars in the village of Musachevo.
"I am really pleased to welcome investors who make plants, real production, and open job places," Borisov stated during the ceremony in the southwestern Bulgarian village.
The Prime Minister voiced hopes that the road to Musachevo would be repaired by the end of the day, adding that the Bulgarian unit of South African company Automotive Leather Company (ALC) was expected to register an output worth around EUR 30 M by the end of 2012.
"It is not just anybody, it is the 10th economy in the world and BMW that have come to Bulgaria to make very important parts of their cars. A large share of the auto glasses in Europe is made in Bulgaria, suspension arms are made in Ruse. There will come a time when they will only be making the car engines and everything else will be made in Bulgaria," Borisov stated.
Addressing the employees of the plant, Borisov suggested that their high-quality work would attract follow-up investments.
Meanwhile, Delyan Dobrev explained that Bulgaria's political and macroeconomic stability had tipped the scales in favor of ALC's investment.
"We are determined to retain this stability and the investment climate," Bulgaria's Minister of Energy, Economy and Tourism noted.
He wished the company to expand its business beyond the current 470 employees.
Sheila Camerer reminded that the year 2012 marked the 20th anniversary of bilateral diplomatic relations between South Africa and Bulgaria.
The South African diplomat argued that the event signaled the growing interest of South African companies in investment opportunities in the spheres of commerce and industry in Bulgaria.
Camerer highlighted that ALC was the third South African company to invest in Bulgaria.
The investment in the ALC plant in Musachevo, which will make seats for the luxury BMW Series 5 and 7, amounts to EUR 4 M and has created some 500 jobs.
The location of the plant was chosen due to its vicinity to Bulgaria's capital, the good infrastructure, and the good connection with international roads.