Korea's Automakers Are Moving Away From Korea

Enrique Pena Nieto, Mexico's president, speaks about a Kia Motors project in Mexico City, on Aug. 27 Photograph by Susana Gonzalez/Bloomberg

The news was big enough for Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto to announce it himself. South Korean automaker Kia Motors will spend more than $1 billion to open its first factory in Mexico, he said today. The deal, which will also lead to an additional $1.5 billion from suppliers who will be setting up operations in Mexico to supply Kia, will see the automaker producing 300,000 vehicles annually by 2016, Vice Chairman Lee Hyoung-keun said. It’s a victory for Mexico, and another sign of trouble for South Korea.

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