With India emerging as one of the major growth-drivers for the Paris-based multinational tyre maker Michelin, the group is open to the idea of a second project in India, Michel Rollier, managing general partner, said.

Talking to visiting Indian journalists in Rio de Janeiro recently, he said while India was one of the largest markets for truck tyres there were opportunities in other areas too like tyres for passenger cars.

Project in Tamil Nadu

Michelin is implementing a Rs. 4,000-crore radial truck/bus tyre project in Tamil Nadu which it hopes to commission by 2012. “We need at least two more years after that to think about another project,” Mr. Rollier said.

In reply to a question suggesting delays over land acquisition and approvals in the Tamil Nadu project, he said, “In democracy things take time but we are hopeful of getting the final approvals within a year, it is a good project.” To a question as to whether there would be an R&D centre too in India, he said that the company would go step-by-step starting with production, followed by marketing and sales and then R&D.

At a separate press conference, Claire Dorland Clauzel, Senior Vice-President, Communications & Brands, said that the company would need to develop a communication strategy later.

Mr. Rollier said that while the company remained deeply committed to its industrial bases in developed countries and would make investments in specialised projects in France, new factories would be built on the basis of necessity. He, however, assured that no jobs were being replaced. The interactions were held under the auspices of Challenge Bibendum, the company's sustainable mobility event.

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