WLOX reported that the new USD 5 billion ThyssenKrupp stainless steel plant in Mobile County, Alabama officially opened for business. The plant currently employs about 1,700 people, and will reach full capacity of 2,700 workers next year.
Dr Ekkehard Schulz chairman of ThyssenKrupp board made clear his commitment to Alabama during the opening ceremony. He said that "So big wheels keep on turning, so goes the opening line of Sweet Home Alabama."
Dr Schulz said that the new plant means work for thousands. He added that "We will eventually have 2700 permanent employees here, many times the number of jobs will be created in the region."
Many of those employees come from Mississippi every day. One of them is Mr Lance Parker from Lucedale, who drives 120 miles each day to his new job. He said that "I worked construction for 13 years and the insurance and benefits is not there in the construction world, so it's better benefits and a better opportunity for my family."
With an average salary of USD 50,000 a year, it's not hard to believe that more than 60,000 people applied for those jobs. Even with the country in an economic slump, company officials said they had no problem investing in this country.
Dr Schulz predicts a bright future. He said that "The automotive and engineering sectors will grow again significantly. The USA is on the right track here. If we didn't believe that, we wouldn't have made this major investment in our new plant. Here are some interesting facts about the plant. It is four times the size of Central Park in New York. In fact, you could put 26 Louisiana Superdomes into the space that's under roof. The plant will manufacture industrial, as well as stainless steel."