Hyundai Motor Group plans record-high investment of $73.7 billion in facilities, R&D by 2018

MarketsAssociated Press

Hyundai Motor Group plans to spend 81 trillion won ($73.7 billion) over the next four years on factories, research and building new headquarters.

The world's fifth-largest automotive group said Tuesday the average annual spending is a 35 percent increase from 2014.

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The announcement comes after Hyundai Motor Co. last week forecast the slowest annual sales growth in more than a decade. The South Korean government has pressured businesses to stop hoarding cash reserves and invest more.

Hyundai plans to build two new factories in China, which will start operating in late 2016 and 2017 as its existing factories reach full capacity. Its affiliate Kia Motors Corp. is also expanding the capacity of its existing Chinese factory.