October 3, 2016 / 3:41 PM / a year ago

French state to order high-speed Alstom trains in Belfort plan- sources

PARIS, Oct 3 (Reuters) - The French state will order 16 passenger cars and 32 locomotives for high-speed trains from Alstom as part of a plan to keep production going at the trainmaker’s historic Belfort plant, two sources close to the matter said on Monday.

Under the plan, 70 million euros ($78.5 million) are to be invested into the Belfort plant to transform it into a maintenance centre serving the European market and so that it can make electric buses in the future, the sources added.

Alstom announced plans last month to stop producing locomotives at Belfort and transfer it to another plant on the German border.

Eager to avoid a high-profile industrial shutdown seven months before a presidential election, the government is to officially outline the plan on Tuesday in Belfort, where Alstom’s first steam engines were made in the 1880s.

$1 = 0.8918 euros Reporting by Emmanuel Jarry; Writing by Leigh Thomas; Editing by Ingrid Melander

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