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North Carolina on shortlist of states for Toyota-Mazda assembly plant

Toyota stock image. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

North Carolina is one of 11 states on Toyota and Mazda’s shortlist for possible places to operate an assembly plant in the United States, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Japanese automakers Toyota and Mazda plan to build a $1.6 billion assembly plant and the shortlist of states includes Alabama, Florida, Kentucky, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Texas, the journal reports.

The southeast has become the preferred location for many foreign manufacturers because of business-friendly labor laws in many of the region’s states.

North Carolina is now the only state in the southeast without a plant. Some experts say the Piedmont Triad has the perfect spot for one at the Greensboro-Randolph Megasite.

The team behind the megasite wants to transform the 1,500-acre property into a fully-fledged automobile manufacturing plant.

Neighbors have protested the site’s development for several years. They put up signs near the megasite’s property that read, “No Megasite here.”

Right now, megasite leaders don’t have any upcoming meetings for public comment scheduled.

FOX8 will keep you updated if that changes.