A new Syngenta Biotechnology facility expanding Syngenta’s biotechnology research and development operation possibly could be built in the North Carolina Research Triangle Park. The company reportedly would need to invest $94 million in a new facility to add 100 or more jobs to obtain a local government incentive.

The local county leaders this week approved giving Syngenta an incentive package for the construction. Syngenta has 364 employees in the park, according to information from the county, and the incentive is tied to the addition of 100 additional new full-time jobs being created with an average salary of $88,107, according to The Herald Sun reporter Laura Oleniacz. She wrote that the county is competing with sites in Iowa, Minnesota, Brazil, China, London and France for the expansion.

The company’s biotechnology research will be expanded but continue focusing on developing genetic modifications for crops to boost their resistance to disease, insects or environmental conditions.

Oleniacz quoted Steven Goldsmith, a spokesman for Syngenta Biotechnology, said the company expects the number of jobs created will be greater than the 100. Syngenta had supporters at the county incentive approval meeting speaking on its behalf including the president and CEO of the Greater Durham Chamber of Commerce and those involved in public biotechnology research in the state.

The expansion would probably be constructed on the Durham County side of the Research Triangle Park where the company recently also completed a new $72 million greenhouse facility.

County leaders voted unanimously to approve an incentive package of up to $375,000 for Syngenta. Of the total, $275,000 would be tied to the facility investment of $94 million. The additional $100,000 is tied to the training of Durham residents for jobs, according to Oleniacz.

Goldsmith said Syngenta’s board will make a decision at an upcoming meeting on whether or not to support the project and if it is approved, where it would be located.
“We appreciate the consideration of the county commissioners and look forward to their decision,” Goldsmith reportedly said. “It would be inappropriate to share any other information about plans at this time as no decision has been made.