May 20, 2014 / 3:42 PM / 4 years ago

UPDATE 1-Poland says Fiat to invest $773 mln in its Polish plants

(Adds Fiat comments)

WARSAW, May 20 (Reuters) - Italian carmaker Fiat plans to invest around 2.36 billion zlotys ($773 million) to upgrade its factories in southern Poland where it plans to start the production of a new model, the Polish government said on Tuesday.

In an official statement the government said the Italian carmaker is to hire 420 new employees on top of the current 3,000 in Poland. About 96 percent of the vehicles from the new production line will be exported, including to North America, it said.

The investment should be made by the end of 2017, it added.

The government statement followed Polish media reports earlier this month about the Fiat investment.

However Fiat distanced itself from the statement and said that the details of its Polish investment were “assumptions that at this moment have not yet been firmed up in the company’s business strategies”.

“The information on investment plans that will be implemented in individual countries will be announced at the appropriate time along with the industrial choices that the company decides to take,” Fiat said. (Reporting by Adrian Krajewski; Additional reporting in Milan by Agnieszka Flak; Editing by Pravin Char)

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