updated 7/24/2005 5:49:29 PM ET 2005-07-24T21:49:29

Intel Corp., the world’s leading computer chipmaker, has decided to build a second, $4 billion plant in southern Israel, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon told his Cabinet on Sunday.

But an Intel spokesman in Israel, Koby Bahar, said the company has not made a decision to build a new plant in Israel.

Sharon said Intel Chief Executive Craig Barrett told him over the phone Saturday night that his company had chosen Kiryat Gat, where Intel already has a major factory, for the site of its new plant, the prime minister’s office said in a statement. The plant would employ 2,000 workers, the statement said.

The Israeli Finance Ministry wasn’t aware of the decision, and the Ministry of Industry and Trade wasn’t immediately available for comment.

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