SOUTH African truckmaker Bell Equipment has signed a deal to build John Deere backhoes and wheeled loaders under licence in South Africa.
US plant giant Deere will build Bell-designed articulated dump trucks in North America.
Bell supplies finished trucks to Deere, which owns a 32 per cent stake in the truckmaker, but the new arrangement should reduce costs and expand Bell's manufacturing base.
Gary Bell, chief executive of Bell Equipment, said: 'This collaboration will increase manufacturing flexibility and change our cost structure.'
The firms will collaborate on purchasing components to reduce their currency exposure.