Thursday, September 30, 1999 Published at 16:24 GMT 17:24 UK
Company rings up 1,000 jobs
The Bathgate plant already employs 3,500 people
A £50m expansion by US electronics giant Motorola is to create 1,000 jobs at its central Scotland mobile phone factory.
Massive demand for the firm's new V-series range of mobile phones, which are said to the world's smallest, is driving the investment. The mobile phone market is growing by about 40% a year.
New manufacturing lines will be added to increase the plant's output by about 50%.
The announcement is particularly welcome because it comes in the wake of two significant blows to the area's economy.
Between the closure of the Continental Tyres factory on the edge of Edinburgh and the Levi jeans plant, near Livingston, some 1,400 jobs are going to be lost.
Mr Dewar, who visited Motorola's Bathgate complex on Thursday, said: "This is excellent news for the Lothians.
The first minister praised the firm's commitment to Scotland, saying that it has been in the country for 30 years and that "it puts back a staggering $900m every year into the Scottish economy".
He added: "Today's announcement is further evidence, if any were needed, that the electronics industry in Scotland is thriving and the Scottish Executive and its agencies like Locate in Scotland will continue to support it in every way possible."
'Testament to our workforce'
The company already employs more than 6,000 people in Scotland - about 3,400 in Bathgate, 3,700 at an East Kilbride semiconductors facility and a further 500 semiconductor staff in South Queensferry.
This new expansion comes just weeks after Motorola announced plans to create 200 jobs in a £60m investment to double capacity at its South Queensferry semiconductor factory, near Edinburgh.
The Bathgate complex will soon employ more than 4,000 people, making it one of the largest employers in Scotland.
Motorola Chairman David Brown said: "This investment here is a testament to the quality of our workforce here in Scotland and reflects our position as one of the leading global suppliers of cellular telephones.
"We will be employing highly skilled people to work on the most advanced manufacturing processes in the production of cellular telephones."
Motorola's contribution and commitment to Scotland is significant:
The announcement was also welcomed by David Crichton, the Chief Executive of the Lothian Enterprise Company, who said it "underlines West Lothian's role as a centre of manufacturing excellence for the new knowledge driven economy".