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Ford Motor Co. and its affiliate, Mazda Motor Corp., will spend more than $500 million to set up a plant in Thailand to expand in Southeast Asia.

Ford and Mazda will produce small cars at the factory from 2009, the companies said in a joint statement Tuesday. The plant will have an annual capacity of 100,000 cars and will also be used as a hub for exports. The two carmakers already have a pickup truck venture in Thailand, the region’s second-largest economy.

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