Ford has reportedly told the local authority in St Petersburg that it is going ahead with plans to increase production capacity at its St Pete plant in 2009.

Grigory Dvas, deputy governor of the Leningrad Region, where the plant is located, told reporters that Ford is going ahead with a planned production capacity increase to 125,000 units in 2009 from 75,000 units currently.

Ford also confirmed its plans to start producing Ford Mondeo cars at the plant in March, Dvas said.

Dvas also said that Finnish tire manufacturer Nokian Tyres planned to increase the production capacity of its Russian plant in Vsevolozhsk in 2009.

In addition, Stadco Holdings plans a plant in the area for inauguration this year, he added.

Ford's St Petersburg plant currently makes the Focus.