Ireland-based paper and plastic bags firm AB Group Packaging has expanded its footprint with the opening of its first US plant in Newark, Delaware.

According to the Delaware Economic Development Office (DEDO), the US manufacturing unit will produce paper bags and industrial packaging products.

The unit will generate around 87 new full-time jobs in the region.

AB Group Packaging CEO Dermot Brady was quoted by Newark Post as saying: "It’s not really huge at the moment. This is a long-term game.

"Our ramp-up and growth is steady and consistent."

"Our ramp-up and growth is steady and consistent."

The DEDO’s Council on Development Finance approved strategic loan funds for the firm, including a $253,365 performance grant for delivering on goals by 2017.

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Another $120,000 capital expenditure grant will be provided after AB Group invests $4m in the Delaware plant’s upgrade.

With a global workforce of approximately 350, the new facility will join AB Group’s existing units across Ireland, the UK and Spain.

Established in 1985, AB Group provides paper bags, flexible packaging and specialist products to commercial retailers.

Its clients include T.J. Maxx, NIKE and Hard Rock Café, as well as industrial customers, including Ball Packaging, Crown Cork and Weber Charcoal.