Lear Corporation (NYSE: LEA), a leading global supplier of automotive seating and electrical distribution systems, today announced its plans to open a new automotive plant to produce seat covers in Gostivar, Macedonia, in summer 2015.  Serving all major European automotive manufacturers, Lear's new facility will initially employ approximately 300 people, with an emphasis on leather and fabric cutting and sewing capability.  Further expansion is expected.

"With Lear's continued success in vertically integrated automotive seating systems and components, we are pleased to begin operations at an interim site in Macedonia and plan new plant construction by mid-2016 in the area," said Jeneanne Hanley, Lear's Vice President for Global Trim and Craftsmanship. "We appreciate the cooperation of all involved as Lear launches its first facility in Macedonia."

With the completion in January 2015 of the acquisition of Eagle Ottawa, Lear Corporation is the world's leading supplier of premium automotive leather, with enhanced global Seating capabilities in the areas of craftsmanship, design options and overall value.

"In line with our position as the world leader in automotive luxury and performance seating," said Raffael Gagliardi, Lear's Vice President of European Seat Fabric Operations, "we welcome the opportunity in adding this new plant to deliver dedicated quality and service every day for our customers."  

Lear Corporation (NYSE: LEA) is one of the world's leading suppliers of automotive seating and electrical distribution systems. Lear serves every major automaker in the world, and Lear content can be found on more than 300 vehicle nameplates.  Lear's world-class products are designed, engineered and manufactured by a diverse team of approximately 132,000 employees located in 34 countries.  Lear currently ranks #177 on the Fortune 500.  Lear's headquarters are in Southfield, Michigan. 

SOURCE Lear Corporation

The Agency for Foreign Investments and Export Promotion continues with activities for comprehensive and active promotion of Macedonia as an attractive investment destination.

In this context, Deputy Director of the Agency, Mr. Clement Shekerovski last week held a series of meetings with the management of several foreign companies last week, among which the Bulgarian company Musala Soft, a US - British company Bio City Development, the Greek company Extraco SA, as well as General Manager of the prestigious business magazine Arab Investor which covers countries in the Middle East and North Africa.

The presence of senior officials was used by Mr. Shekerovski for presentation of the opportunities for starting and doing business in the country, as well as familiarizing the guests with the favorable business environment and the partnership of Government with the business community and investors.

At the meetings, the guests expressed their interest to intensify communication with the Agency in the forthcoming period and scan the investment opportunities in several areas including software development, production of materials widely used in construction and mining, investment in the planned free health zones and medical tourism, and greater promotion of the Republic of Macedonia in the MENA countries which have huge investor potential that could be harnessed.

The Economic Promoter in Chicago, Dejan  Velichkov together with the Director of TIDZ, and the Minister for FDI, Bill Pavleski represented Macedonia on two important automotive conferences in the Midwest of United States.   In Detroit from April 21 – 23, Macedonia was promoted as investment destination during the SAE Automotive World Congress & Exhibition. The SAE Automotive World Congress is one of the most important conferences in the automotive industry in United States, which attracts executives, engineers and experts from the global automotive industry.  Macedonia was represented with a booth, which raised the interest of the many visitors and automotive executives. During the conference the Macedonian team had multiple meetings with several automotive companies interested to expand their footprint in Europe. Moreover, in Chicago from April 24 – 26 the investment opportunities in Macedonia were presented on the Automechanika 2015 show, which is specialized for automotive parts and components

Yesterday, April 29, more than 20 owners of companies of the Turkish-Azerbaijani Business Association attended the business forum, which was held in Baku where potentials for investment in the Republic of Macedonia and advantages for foreign investments were presented.

At the opening of the forum in Baku, the Macedonian President Gjorge Ivanov, addressed the attendants expressing confidence that the good political cooperation between the two countries will be effective economically.

- I believe that this meeting today is just the beginning of a successful and fruitful cooperation. I expect that in the upcoming period I will have the opportunity to welcome President Aliyev to the Republic of Macedonia and I hope that you we will continue with the Macedonian-Azerbaijani business forum. Therefore, I urge you to visit Macedonia, see the existing facilities, see the positive experience of companies already present to make sure that Macedonia offers great opportunities for expansion of your business, President Ivanov said.

The investment opportunities in Macedonia and the favorable business climate was presented by Kliment Shekerovski, Deputy Director of the Agency for Foreign Investments and Export Promotion of the Republic of Macedonia. Businessmen at the meeting expressed interest in investing in construction, especially in the energy sector.

Representative of Tekfen Construction, one of the largest Turkish companies in construction and oil, working in Azerbaijan for more than 20 years, whose last project was the Olympic Stadium in Baku, said he would like to come in Macedonia and learn about the possibilities of doing business.

The Turkish-Azerbaijani Business Association has more than 300 companies with business in several economic branches as members. Only in construction, its members have undertaken contracts worth 15 billion dollars, have invested over $ 7.5 billion in Azerbaijan and employ 60,000 people.