Palm do Brasil, the subsidiary of Palm Inc. in Brazil, confirmed Tuesday the beginning of the local manufacturing of Palm handheld computers.

Manufacturing the devices locally will drive down their retail prices in Brazil and allow Palm to extend sales to other parts of the country beyond the biggest markets of Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, where it has so far concentrated its efforts, said Alexandre Szapiro, vice-president of marketing and sales of Palm do Brasil, at a press conference in Sao Paulo. Palm estimates that its locally-manufactured handhelds will retail for about 30 per cent less than imported ones, he said.

Palm is outsourcing the manufacturing to Celestica Inc., which will make the devices at its plant in Jaguari

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