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Car industry urges policy shift

24 June 2013, 11:44

Abuja - Nigeria’s National Automotive Council (NAC) urged policy reforms to encourage local production amid statistics that the country is spending a lot on the importing of vehicles.

According to statistics NAC has revealed, Nigeria spends about N600 billion (US$360 million) annually to import new and used vehicles.
About 50 000 new and 150 000 used vehicles are brought into the country yearly.

NAC Director-General, Aminu Jalal, said the current policy structure encouraged importation and hampered production.

“That is why we are trying to reverse it to something that is obtainable in India and others where it is easier to set up manufacturing plant than importing vehicles,” he said.

Jalal said the proposed launch of Made-in-Nigeria vehicles in 2017 was no longer realistic due to unfavourable policy that encouraged vehicle importation to the detriment of production.

He explained that the plan was initiated when import duty was 30 percent but that had fallen to 10 percent.

He described the situation as unfavourable for investment.

“Our approach to a Nigerian vehicle is that the vehicle that is being assembled will have up to 60 or 70 percent local content and then one can call it Nigerian vehicle. Now to achieve that, one must first attract investors into the sector. The easiest way to do that is by putting in place the tariff that will discourage importing and encourage production of vehicles,” Jalal said.

 – CAJ News


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