Ontario premier to travel to Italy to woo Fiat

Wed May 7, 2008 3:52pm EDT
 
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TORONTO (Reuters) - Dalton McGuinty, the premier of Ontario, will make a trip to Italy on May 21 to pitch auto giant Fiat SpA on setting up shop in the Canadian province, his office confirmed on Wednesday.

McGuinty will travel to Turin to meet with Fiat representatives at the company's headquarters.

"Fiat has mused publicly about making an investment in North America," McGuinty told media at the provincial legislature on Monday.

"Nobody's better at building cars than we are," he said. "So if they're coming to North America, we want to land them here."

Ontario is the center of Canada's the automotive sector, which produced about 2.54 million cars and light trucks last year.

Companies with plants already operating in the province include General Motors Corp, Ford Motor Co. Chrysler LLC Honda Motor Co, and Toyota Motor Corp.

Media reports have said the Italian automaker, whose brands include Fiat, Alfa Romeo and Ferrari, is expected to produce a small number of Alfa Romeos in North America.

Currently, Fiat does not sell its Alfa Romeo or Fiat brands in North America.

(Reporting by John McCrank; editing by Rob Wilson)