The Slovenia Times

PM Cerar labels Yaskawa investment "green, creative and smart"


"We are presenting the Slovenian industry abroad as green, creative and smart and this is what the project of this new plant is like as well," Cerar said, highlighting the government efforts to attract more such investors.

He pointed to the new law aimed at boosting investment, which will equalise the rights of domestic and foreign investors, so individual foreign investors will no longer need to be assisted.

"In my firm belief, Slovenia is an excellent location for new investments and for company seats. It offers an excellent strategic location, an international business environment and a very well trained and skilled labour force," the prime minister stressed.

Today's launch of the Yaskawa investment, which is valued at almost EUR 25m, was also attended by several senior Yaskawa officials and by several ministers.

CEO of YASKAWA Europe and vice-president of Yaskawa Electric Corporation Manfred Stern said that they had worked hard for the Kočevje investment, met all the deadlines and that construction was starting a month ahead of schedule.

The plant will start operating in the final quarter of next year, he said.

Yaskawa employs 14,500 people around the world and produces 40,000 robots a year, Stern noted. 1,700 of its employees are in Europe.

The head of the Yaskawa Robotics Division Europe and director of Yaskawa Europe, Bruno Schnekenburger, said the new plant was to help Yaskawa meet the European needs and become the leading robots manufacturer on its markets.

The plant in Kočevje will spread across 120 X 92 metres and have just under 10,000 square metres of effective surface area. By 2023, it is to employ some 200 people and produce 6,000 robots a year, he said.

General director of Yaskawa Robotics Division and vice-president of Yaskawa Electric Masahiro Ogawa said Slovenia was ideal for Yaskawa's new European robots plant.

Slovenia will support the investment with EUR 5.6m, while the local education centre is to produce more engineers to meet the plant's staffing needs.

Apart from the plant of industrial robots, Yaskawa will also open an R&D centre to boost cooperation with Slovenian faculties and science institutes.

Yaskawa Electric acquired the Germany-based Slovenian company Motoman Robotec in 1994 and founded Yaskava Ristro in Ribnica two years later.

Also based in Ribnica is Yaskawa Slovenija, which covers the sales in Slovenia and on former Yugoslavian markets.

This year, Yaskawa Europe Robotics was set up to manage the new robots factory in Kočevje.


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