Nissan Motor reportedly is to invest $US100 million by 2010 to expand its operations in Egypt, including some $60 million earmarked by 2005.

Nissan plans to buy out and renovate an existing manufacturing facility near Cairo, while enhancing sales and distribution operations there, the company said in a statement cited by Reuters.

Under the latest expansion plan, Nissan reportedly plans to start local assembly of its first passenger vehicle, the Sunny [Sentra/Pulsar] sedan, in Egypt in the summer of 2005 – this will be followed by the launch of the locally assembled X-Trail sports utility vehicle.

According to Reuters, Nissan began operations in Egypt in December 1997, selling a locally assembled pickup model and imported Sunny sedan.

“This investment proves our commitment to Egypt and to the Middle East as well as a further expansion in other key global markets,” Carlos Ghosn, president and CEO of Nissan was reported as saying. “Egypt offers Nissan a competitive geographic base to help expand both its local business as well as exports to North American and Mid-Eastern markets.”