The largest tobacco company in Romania, British American Tobacco, announced at the beginning of this week that will make a large investment in the factory located in Ploiesti, Prahova County. The investment is considered to be strategical at both national and European level.
On June 11, 2018, in the presence of the Vice PM Viorel Stefan, the Finance Minister Eugen Teodorovici, the Minster for Business Environment, Commerce and Entrepreneurship, Radu Oprea, of the representatives of the local and county administration, the British American Tobacco (BAT) management revealed that will invest EUR 800 million in the Ploiesti factory, in the next five years. The investment which will generate 200 jobs in the first step, will allow the expansion of the innovative tobacco heating product – glo – in Europe, starting from the next month. Actually, the production of the new product range was started through a symbolic gesture, namely by pressing a button by the management of the company and Vice Pm Viorel Stefan, on the day in which the official event at the Ploiesti factory was organized. For producing Neosticks, the tobacco consumables working with the glo device, a new production hall will be built from scratch.
The new space will have a total area of over 7,000 square meters, and the Ploiesti factory will be the only Neostik supplier for Europe. In this context, Ram Addanki, Central and Southern Europe Manager of British American Tobacco, wished to say: “We are proud that our factory in Ploiesti will become a strategic European center for the production and export of Neostiks for our innovative tobacco heating device – glo. Our Ploiesti factory gains an essential role in achieving the BAT vision of providing smokers with potentially low-risk products – such as glo. Our investment in the Ploiesti factory supports the creation, in a first stage, of 200 jobs in Romania, which will be added to the 800 people already working in the factory now”. He added that the amount to be invested in the next five years is proof of the company’s commitment to Romania, a country that is “exactly what investors are looking for right now, considering that it has a very high growth economy”. “The amount of 800 million euros to be invested in Ploiesti in the next 5 years is proof of our commitment to Romania. At present, 60% of the products manufactured in Romania are exported in other 45 countries, and this percentage will increase to 70% as a result of the new investments. We want to continue investing in Romania and we hope that the Romanian Government will provide the necessary predictability. Since the black tobacco market is one of the most serious challenges for us and for our investments, as well as for government incomes and for consumers, it is encouraging that the Romanian Government announced plans to secure the Romanian borders by the end of the year and created a working group to identify the best legal solutions to the illicit issue”, added Ram Addanki.
And since they were present at these statements, the government representatives who came at the BAT factory in Ploiesti stated that the Executive would continue to support foreign investments in Romania. “Investing in this factory is very important. It also has major significance for the Ploiesti community, taking into account that state-of-the-art products will be produced. This means that Romania has the potential and is an urge for other investors to come to Romania”, the Vice Prime Minister Viorel Ştefan said. In addition, Eugen Teodorovici, the Minister of Public Finance, wished to mention that if the investment of EUR 800 million will be made in the Ploiesti factory, “it means that those in Prahova were convincing”. On the other hand, stressing that the fight against illicit trafficking is very important, Eugen Teodorovici also announced that, with a view to detecting counterfeit products, it is taken into account that the products will be scanned at all customs points.
We mention that glo is the heating device that heats – not burns – specially made tobacco sticks (called Neostiks) at about 240° C. Since it does not involve tobacco burning, as with traditional cigarettes, glo has a low-risk potential, compared to traditional smoking. In this context, it was also announced that the Ploiesti factory will also provide Neostiks for the Romanian market, after glo was launched in Romania, for the first time in the European Union, at the end of last year. Thus, the British American Tobacco factory in Ploiesti is already one of the most technologically advanced production units in the group at global level, after an investment of almost EUR 310 million by now. With its new production capacities, the Ploiesti factory will become one of the five largest BAT production units in the world.