2020 was an especially successful year for the Panevėžys FEZ: 2 new investors were attracted, new jobs are being created, rapid expansion is planned
“Despite the global health crisis, 2020 was one of the most successful years for the Panevėžys FEZ. We succeeded in attracting two new investors, AQ Wiring Systems, UAB and Komex, UAB, which will create a combined total of more than 1,000 jobs and will invest about 20 million euro”, says the head of the Panevėžys FEZ, Rokas Krivonis.” It is a pleasure to see how the negotiations that began some time ago and all our preparatory work were not put aside to await a more favourable moment for business. On the contrary, it is planned to carry out the projects in the near future.
The first of the new investors is the Swedish automotive cable harness manufacturer AQ Wiring Systems, UAB. The company’s main product areas are automotive cable harnesses and electromechanical modules, including design and engineering services. The company has operated in Panevėžys since 2001. Some of the company’s largest clients include Scania, Renault and Volvo. It has been announced that AQ Wiring Systems, UAB plans to build a factory of about 17,000 square metres, with construction work starting in the spring. It is expected that in the final stage, about 1,300 jobs will be created.
The second of the new investors is Komex, UAB. The company produces polyethylene packaging materials for the processing industry. The company plans to build a 24,000-square-metre factory at the Panevėžys FEZ. The selection of the location was carefully considered. Krivonis explains, “The Panevėžys FEZ was able to offer quick solutions, including infrastructure and the necessary plot of land.” He also points to other competitive advantages, including the architects who partner with the FEZ and the construction companies which, understanding the particular needs of the FEZ, can quickly provide the necessary preliminary designs and estimates of potential expenses. “That contributes to simpler decision-making.” According to Krivonis, the modern environment taking shape at the FEZ creates ever greater added value when an investor makes a decision on where to establish a new facility.
Komex, UAB plans to invest at the Panevėžys FEZ in two stages. In the first stage, manufacturing, logistics and administration will be consolidated in one location. It is planned to invest about 5 million euro during this stage. The second stage will be devoted to purchase and installation of new equipment. It is planned to invest about 2 million euro during this stage.
Until now, Komex, UAB operated separate polyethylene manufacturing and processing workshops at different locations in the city of Panevėžys. After completing the two stages of the expansion project, the company’s expenses will be reduced and production efficiency will be increased. It is also planned to create new jobs; the company will employ a total of 100.
Komex, UAB plans to specialise in the production of postal courier bags and thermally-insulated packing bags for the food industry. Demand for these products has increased during the pandemic, so it was the right time to consider a new business niche in which to develop.
Krivonis says that 2021 is expected to be an especially active year for new manufacturing projects. This includes expansion by Harju Elekter Group. The company specialistes in the manufacture of electrical control and distribution units and the design and installation of industrial automatino equipment. Near the Panevėžys FEZ, there is Achatas UAB, a metal processing company, and Etea Group, an ethyl alcohol producer.
The German electronic manufacturing service provider Leesys also chose the Panevėžys FEZ as the optimal location for its investment. Other investors at the FEZ include IMG Lithuania, a Norwegian furniture maker; Devold, a maker of clothing made from the highest-quality merino wool; and Spektrus EU, specialising in making marketing materials including signboards and vehicle advertising.
The Director of the Panevėžys FEZ forecasts an active 2021, which he calls “a year for construction”. Krivonis cannot yet reveal all of the investors’ plans, but he expects to have several projects in progress, including the ones mentioned above. “If everything goes as planned, the Panevėžys FEZ should become a giant construction site,” he jokes. Tens of millions of euro are being invested in and around the Panevėžys FEZ; it is planned to create a significant number of new jobs. All of that will contribute to the region’s economic growth and greater attractiveness to potential investors. Krivonis expects to announce more news about investors’ plans in 2021-2022.
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