Official: Caterpillar to build plant in Georgia

ATLANTA (AP) — An official familiar with the project says Caterpillar plans to build a new manufacturing plant in Georgia, bringing an estimated 1,400 jobs to the state.

The official told The Associated Press on Friday that the plant will be built in the Athens area. The official requested anonymity because a formal announcement has not been made.

Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal has scheduled a 10 a.m. news conference for what he described as a major jobs announcement.

The Peoria, Ill.-based company did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

In November, Caterpillar announced plans to shift production from Japan to a new plant in North America to produce small tractors and excavators. The company said it wanted to move production of the equipment closer to its customers in North America and Europe.

© 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.