The Minister of Industry, Trade, and Investment, Doris Uzoka-Anite, announced plans to position Nigeria as a significant player in the vehicle manufacturing sector.

Vehicles
Vehicles

This announcement was made during the launch of the Nigeria Automotive Industry Development Plan, attended by stakeholders from both public and private sectors.

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Uzoka-Anite emphasized that the goal of the automotive industry development plan is to establish Nigeria as a fully-fledged vehicle manufacturer within the next decade.

She highlighted Nigeria’s potential in terms of raw materials, skilled workforce, and market demand, asserting that the plan encompasses the production of various vehicles such as motorcycles, tricycles, sedans, and heavy-duty trucks.

The minister expressed optimism that with the implementation of this plan, Nigeria could achieve self-sufficiency in vehicle production within 10 years, ultimately aiming to reduce the cost of vehicle ownership for average Nigerians.

Joseph Osanipin, the Director-General of the National Automotive Design and Development Council, outlined a proposed policy to support the plan, including a five-year tax holiday for vehicle assemblers in Nigeria. He emphasized the importance of fiscal incentives to drive backward integration and local component production.

The implementation committee for the Automotive Industry Development Plan includes representatives from key ministries such as Finance, Transport, Environment, Industry, Trade, and Investment.

Additionally, it comprises organizations like the Nigeria Customs Service, the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, and the Standards Organisation of Nigeria.

Despite Nigeria’s potential, the local automobile assembling industry faced challenges in the past year, including rising production costs and weakened demand.

The Manufacturers CEOs Confidence Index indicated a decline in activities within the motor vehicle assembly sector, with production and distribution costs soaring and capacity utilization dropping.

The Federal Government’s Automotive Policy of 2014 aimed to boost local content and establish automobile financing schemes. However, challenges such as limited government patronage and inadequate regulations hindered the industry’s growth.

Currently, Nigeria produces less than 10 percent of the cars used in the country, highlighting the need for concerted efforts to realize the goals outlined in the automotive industry development plan.

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