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Imperial Tobacco holds official opening for Petone factory

Imperial Tobacco holds official opening for Petone factory expansion

New Zealand's largest tobacco manufacturer, Imperial Tobacco, commemorates the expansion of its production facility in Petone today with an official opening by Lower Hutt Mayor, Ray Wallace.

Imperial Tobacco's factory manager, Mike McInnarney, said the official opening caps an 18 month major upgrade of the facilities at the Petone site, including the addition of a variety of hi-tech production equipment.

He said approximately $45 million was invested in the expansion, which enables the company to supply tobacco products for Imperial Tobacco in Australia.

"We will be exporting over 3 billion cigarettes and approximately 700 tonnes of roll your own tobacco annually to Australia," Mr McInnarney said.

The plant upgrade took place after Imperial Tobacco New Zealand won a worldwide tender to supply the Australian market.

"We were chosen from a number of other sites in the Imperial Group," Mr McInnarney said.

"It's a credit to the hard work and ingenuity of the Kiwi team that we were selected for such a major project."

Imperial Tobacco’s Petone site has been home to tobacco companies since 1929. It was owned by British American Tobacco before Imperial took it over in 1999.

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