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Business

Lego building factory in China

Lego predicted the new factory will be able to supply 70 to 80 percent of the toys it sells in Asia in 2017.

Brian Ach/Associated Press/For Lego/file

Lego predicted the new factory will be able to supply 70 to 80 percent of the toys it sells in Asia in 2017.

HONG KONG — Lego is building its first factory in China as part of a plan to move production closer to Asia, its fastest growing market.

The Danish maker of colorful plastic building blocks for children said it is investing at least $130 million in the new plant. Construction will start in 2014 and it will be fully operational by 2017.

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The factory will be located in Jiaxing, 67 miles southwest of Shanghai, where Lego is planning an Asian distribution center.

Lego said the new factory will be ‘‘a supply base for future growth in Asia.’’ The company said that in recent years sales in the region have grown by more than 50 percent annually.

Chief operating officer Bali Padda said the company’s strategy is to cut down on time needed for shipping by basing production near its main markets.

Lego predicted the factory, which will have moulding, decoration, and packaging facilities, will be able to supply 70 to 80 percent of the toys it sells in Asia in 2017.

The plant will employ 2,000 workers by the time it is fully operational. The company also has factories in Denmark, Hungary, the Czech Republic, and Mexico.

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