Okechukwu Enelemah, Nigeria’s Minister of Industry,Trade and Investment said the federal Government Nigeria Automotive Policy is already attracting more investments with 29 out of 54 licenced automotive Assembly Plants currently operational.
Enelemah who gave the information revealed further that a total installed capacity of 419,190 units and a total actual production of 8,628 units have been achieved so far.
Before this policy, the Minister said three out of the five assembly plants established in the 1970s had become moribund.
But five years after it was strengthened and relaunched, the national automotive policy is yielding positive results and drawing investors from across the world.
The automotive policy’s major objective,according to Minister Enelemah is to bring back Completely-Knocked-Down (CKD) automotive assembly and develop local content, thereby turning Nigeria into a vehicle manufacturing country.
According to Enelemah,”The automotive industry plays both a strategic and catalytic role in economic development and the objective of the national automotive policy is to restore assembly and develop local content, thus, creating employment, acquiring technology and reducing pressure on the country’s balance of payment.
Efforts to attain an effective automotive sector have been a continuous one and as the policy continued to evolve over the years with necessary tweaking, remarkable achievements have made.
“The achievements made so far confirm the high potentials of the policy to grow the automotive sector,” said the Minister in a statement issued on Sunday.
Presently many assembly plants in the country are in operation. Over 14 existing assembly plants like Peugeot Automobile Nigeria Limited (PAN), Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing Co. (IVM), Anambra Motor Manufacturing Company (ANAMMCO) and Leyland-Busan have started assembling new products since 2014, and new ones have been established.
Also, Dangote Sinotruk West Africa LTD, a Joint Venture with total investment of $100million for truck assembly will assemble and produce full range of commercial vehicles covering heavy duty truck, medium truck, light truck and other semi-trailers etc. It aims to meet an expected current demand of these segments of automobiles required for logistics, construction, food & beverage industries in Nigeria as the government focuses on boosting economic development across the country.
The company has installed capacity to assemble and produce 10,000 trucks annually and this alone will create 3000 jobs across Nigeria.
Another example of the positive results of the automotive policy is the growth of ANAMMCO.
The company downsized its staff from 2011 due to the unfavourable conditions. The downturn in business also affected employment down the value chain. With the revival of manufacturing, ANAMMCO recalled 200 of the staff that had been laid off. The company is currently waxing stronger and has received several proposals from Original Equipment Manufacturers interested in establishing local assembly presence.
The policy has also generated interest outside the country. Recently, a delegation of international automotive investors, comprising original equipment manufacturers and other stakeholders visited the country.
Among others, they sought to: gain insight into the opening business opportunities and investment environment in the Nigerian automotive sector; assist in the shaping of national and state policy to support industry overall and domesticated manufacturing for the automotive sector; gain insight into the automotive sector & potential for enhanced manufacturing in Nigeria; build relationships and networks with key Government and private sector figures; and to deepen the structured business links and investment between the private sectors of Nigeria and South Africa.
Enelamah, who was the host of the delegation during the visit said: “We are excited by the role the automotive industry plays in the strategic and catalytic economic development of countries and we are committed to developing the sector speedily to facilitate the economic diversification of the country.”