AUSTIN -- International energy pipeline giant Tenaris S.A. said Friday that it plans to build a $1.3 billion Gulf Coast plant that will bring 600 jobs and better supplying operations to the Eagle Ford Shale play in South Texas.Gov. Rick Perry said Tenaris, the world's No. 1 producer of steel tubing for the oil industry, is receiving $6 million from the Texas Enterprise Fund, a pot of money used to attract outside businesses to the state. The company's North American headquarters is in Houston.The Republican governor said he helped persuade the company to choose Texas as it expands its U.S. workforce, noting that he met with the Tenaris leadership during an economic development trip to Italy last year and during a Formula One race in Austin two months later."The most profound statement about our favorable economic climate comes when companies like Tenaris make an investment of this size in our state," Perry said in a statement. "That says that not only is Texas the best place to grow your business now, but they're confident that we'll remain that way moving forward."Perry joined Tenaris executives and local elected officials in Bay City, south of Houston, where the plant will be built, as part of the announcement.The 1-million-square-foot plant is set to open in 2016. It will feature a seamless-pipe mill and heat treatment and premium threading facilities, and it is expected to eventually produce 600,000 tons of pipe annually.Tenaris, incorporated since 2002 in Luxembourg, has hubs in Italy, Argentina and elsewhere and has around 27,000 employees worldwide.Perry's office oversees the Texas Enterprise Fund, which was created in 2003 by the Legislature and has been used to persuade firms such as Apple to expand in Texas. Projects financed by the fund must be approved by the governor, lieutenant governor and House speaker.The governor said the fund has now spent more than $493 million and helped close the deals on projects generating more than 66,300 new jobs and $18.6 billion in capital investment.But it's not without controversy. Some Republicans have branded the fund "corporate welfare," and Democrats note that it has yet to undergo an independent audit in the decade it has existed.