Kinston pharma plant expanding

From staff reportsMarch 9, 2011 

A Kinston maker of pharmaceutical components stands to receive $3.5 million in financial incentives for a plant expansion without any requirement for new hiring.

West Pharmaceuticals said today it will invest $29 million over five years its Kinston facility, which makes components for syringes and injection devices.

West said it selected the Kinston facility for upgrades over other plants in North Carolina, Florida and Nebraska. The $29 million will pay for new technologies in washing, inspection and clean manufacturing processes for the production of pharmaceutical packaging products.

The Pennsylvania-based company employs 325 people in Kinston and expects to fill positions in microbiology and engineering.

"However, at this time it is impossible to determine the exact number and timing of new hires within the five-year investment period," said West spokeswoman Genevieve Gadenne.

The local and state incentives do not require job creation as a condition of receiving financial support, said N.C. Department of Commerce spokeswoman Kimberly McCarl.

The West facility stands to receive just over $1 million in local incentives, up to $500,000 from the state utility fund for infrastructure improvements, and up to $2 million in tax credits.

The company previously announced a $20 million upgrade in 2007. At that time, it qualified for a $300,000 One N.C. grant with a commitment to create 154 jobs. To day, West has received $225,000 of that job-creation grant.

West has had a presence in Kinston since 1975, but the original plant was destroyed in an explosion that killed six people. The facility was rebuilt in 2004 and employed 211 by the fall of 2007.

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