The National Economic Council has urged the National Assembly to pass the 2023 National Automotive Industry Development Bill.
This bill is crucial in positioning Nigeria to attract substantial Foreign Direct Investments in the automotive sector.
This was one of the decisions reached at Thursday’s meeting of the Council in Abuja inaugurated by President Tinubu and presided over by Vice President Kashim Shettima.
Passing this bill will not only boost the country’s economy but also create job opportunities for Nigerians.
The Council has stated that providing legislative support for the industry will create the necessary mechanisms for significant growth in vehicle production, which will cater to the Nigerian, African, and global markets.
During the meeting, Governor Alex Otti of Abia State informed the media that the Council also made additional recommendations to establish a highly efficient ecosystem for the exponential advancement of Electric Vehicle and Compressed Natural Gas Vehicles in Nigeria.
Governor Otti said the Council sought approval for the implementation of the Electric Vehicle Development Plan and Policy to fast Track the development of Electric Vehicles in Nigeria.
According to the Governor, the Council called for necessary funding and support to the Nigeria Automotive Design and Development Council, NADDC, “for the development of the Ultimate Nigerian Vehicle, the Pride of the Nation, one in tune with the culture, terrain and economic structure of Nigeria, perfect balance of affordability, practicality and advanced features.”
He noted that the legislative support for the automotive industry would help to provide dedicated funding for the Vehicle Finance Scheme with special emphasis on EV and CNG vehicles, to enable the affordable nationwide purchase of locally produced vehicles by Nigerians, thereby boosting production and further growth of the sector.
He said the Council targets creating one million jobs in the automotive sector and attaining 40% local content production through strategic funding and affordable infrastructure at dedicated industrial parks and clusters.
He said that the development of the automotive industry would enable the attainment of 30% local production as Electric Vehicles and enforcement of stricter Vehicle Emission Regulations to achieve environmental targets in line with the 2015 Paris Accord (on the mitigation of greenhouse gases) and the nation’s commitment to net zero by 2060 as pronounced at the 2021 COP26 in Glasgow.
“Nigeria presents an unparalleled destination for strong automotive companies, it gives them an opportunity to be part of an exciting journey in the provision of relevant advanced and value-added transportation solutions for the upliftment of the lives of millions of people,” Otti said.
He listed achievements Nigeria has made in the automotive industry, including investments and job creation.
“Over $1bn/N500bn has been invested into Nigeria by credible local and international investors in setting up automotive production and assembly plants in the country. The facilities are located in the states of Lagos, Ogun, Anambra, Enugu, Akwa Ibom, Kaduna, and Kano.
“Top investors are Innoson Motor Manufacturing, Dangote-Sino Trucks, Dangote-Peugeot, Mikano-Geely/Changan, PAN, Stallion/Hyundai, Honda, Elizade/Toyota, Coscharis/Ford, Iron Products, Kojo Motors/Omaa, Jet Systems Motors.
“Combined installed capacity of 400,000 units per annum has been achieved.”
He stated that vehicles assembled or produced in Nigeria include Sedans, SUVs, Pickups, Buses, Trucks, Military/Security, Ambulances/Special purposes as well as electric-powered, petrol-powered, diesel-powered, and CNG-powered vehicles.
Governor Otti said that over 50 thousand direct and indirect jobs have been created in the industry.