Ford announces manufacturing footprint in Nigeria
Not deterred by the static posture of the local assembly plants in Nigeria, Coscharis Motors recently opened its Ford’s assembly plant, followed by a media tour of the million dollars facility located on Awayaya area of Epe on the outskirts of Lagos.
Although, the total investment value in terms of structure and equipment was not made public, the plant located on an expansive 14 hectares of land within Coscharis Group’s head office in Lekki, Lagos joins the Ford assembly plant in South Africa as part of the automakers expansion strategy.
The new factory is the second ever Ford manufacturing outfit in the entire African continent, outside of South Africa. With this development, Coscharis as an organization, reinforces its belief in the Nigerian project in the country’s march towards industrialisation and economic diversification.
Cosmas Maduka, Coscharis Group’s President/CEO, told newsmen that the auto dealership his took a risk into the project in response to the National Automotive Industry Development Plan (NAIDP) of the Federal Government.
NAIDP aims, among other objectives, to discourage the importation of Completely Built vehicles and encourage the local manufacturing of vehicles through either Complete Knocked Down or Semi Knocked Down facilities for a start.
According to him, the move is seeks to appreciate the confidence that the globally respected iconic brand, Ford, reposed in Coscharis Motors as exclusive official representative in the country to roll out the very first Ford assembly plant in Nigeria.
At the moment, the model focus at the facility is the roll-out of the Ford Ranger, a multi-purpose utility pick-up truck that serves well for both work and leisure.
Maduka pointed out that Ford has a global standard for all of its products including the Ranger, adding that Ford’s certification of the facility and output is a confirmation that every single Ranger that rolls out of the plant is indeed ‘Built Ford Tough’.
The company chief disclosed that so far, more than 600 units from the facility have been rolled out operations commenced. He assured that the company will wax stronger into the future with the introduction of other great Ford variants into the assembly line. He called on the federal government to give more support to the auto industry.
According to him, “We can only but demand for governmental support in terms of by creating enabling environment vis-à-vis basic infrastructures that are required to keep the manufacturing process on and more importantly the purchase patronage of the finished products from the plant.”
Cosmas Maduka noted that, the fact that the franchisee ventured into assembly plant project headlong underpins the level of confidence and hope stakeholders have for the future of the Nigerian automotive industry.
“This is to underscore the human capital opportunities that stand to be delivered in terms of employment and by extension the multiplier effect on the economic development of our dear country, Nigeria.” He said.
The new Ford assembly is a capital intensive project, which also involves huge financial, technical and human resources commitment. Therefore the fact that we have ventured into it headlong underpins the level of confidence and hope we have for the future of the Nigerian automotive industry.
‘’This is to underscore the human capital opportunities that stand to be delivered in terms of employment and by extension the multiplier effect on the economic development of our dear country, Nigeria. We have always dreamt of a Nigeria that will take its place in the global arena, a Nigeria that sits among the egalitarians in the committee of Nations, taken its rightful place in the pages of history’’. The Coscharis Group CEO stated.
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