Slovakia battling Romania for Chinese electric carmaker Zhi Dou's plant

Slovakia battling Romania for Chinese electric carmaker Zhi Dou's plant
ZD D1 electric vehicle / Abxbay
By bne IntelliNews April 24, 2018

Slovakia could have another carmaker on its already soil. Chinese Zhi Dou, a producer of electric cars, has narrowed down its choice on where to build a European factory to Slovakia or Romania, the daily Hospodarske noviny reported on April 24.

For Slovakia, the entry of another carmaker would be significant especially for two reasons: the factory would be in eastern Slovakia – in the regional capital Kosice – which is still economically underdeveloped; the entry of an electric carmaker would diversify the industry but not address the Slovak dependency on it.

Romania, meanwhile, has the upper hand in terms of offering subsidies, which can reach up to 50% of the investment. Slovakia offers up to 35%. Zhi Dou could also save on labour costs there, as in Slovakia falling unemployment is pushing wages up significantly.

Slovakia is the top car producer worldwide in per capita terms, which could also be a positive factor in the Chinese company's decision-making.

Another possible carmaker on Slovak market is German luxury carmaker BMW, long rumoured to be considering a move to the central European country. Company spokesperson Sandra Schillmoller said BMW is looking to build a new factory and further expansion can’t be ruled out.

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