CAIRO – 14 March 2019: Nissan Motor Corporation asserted its desire to consolidate its presence in the Egyptian market and cooperate with the Egyptian government in carrying out its ambitious plans for the development of the local auto industry to place Egypt among the leading countries in the field of making and exporting automobiles.
This came during a meeting held between Prime Minister Moustafa Madbouli and a Nissan delegation led by Peyman Kargar, the Senior Vice President of Nissan and Chairman of its Management Committee for Africa, Middle East, and India, who affirmed that Egypt is of special importance for the company’s investments in the Middle East region given the potentials and valuable qualities and advantages it enjoys.
At the meeting, attended by Trade and Industry Minister Amr Nassar, Madbouli said that his government is ready to offer all possible incentives to encourage serious companies like Nissan to expand their businesses and pump more investments in the Egyptian market, highlighting a meeting he had earlier in the week with a delegation of the Egyptian-Japanese business council and the fruitful talks which the delegation conducted with President Abdel Fattah El Sisi as regards the promising future of the Japanese investments in Egypt.
The premier instructed Nassar to continue consultations with Nissan to accelerate the implementation of its expansion plans in the Egyptian market.
– EGYPT TODAY
Suzuki plans to open vehicle plant in Ghana
The Japanese Multinational automobile manufacturing company, Suzuki Motor Corporation, has resolved to set up a production unit in Ghana.
The company intends to make Ghana the hub of its operations in sub-Saharan Africa.
Suzuki’s General Manager in-charge of Middle East and Africa, Koichi Suzuki, disclosed this when he called on President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo at the Jubilee House in Accra.
Mr. Suzuki said the company, which joins four other automakers- Volkswagen, Nissan, Renault and China’s Sinotruck-who have planned the assembly plants for Ghana, intends siting its distribution and after-sales service centre in the country in partnership with Compagnie Française de l’Afrique Occidentale (CFAO).
He said the company, which has over 50 percent shares in the Indian automotive industry, in collaboration with Toyota Tsusho, the trading arm of the Toyota Group that has the largest distribution network in Africa, intends to “find a next India on the African continent”.
Mr Suzuki said with the Government of Ghana introducing a new automotive policy, “We are highly interested to participate in the initiative made by the Ghanaian government to start production here to expand it and to grow it.”
“We firmly believe that our next growth will come here in Africa,” he stated, adding, “we want to contribute to the further development of African countries…Our vision is with Africa and for Africa.”
Suzuki produces annually 3.3 million affordable but reliable, safe and fuel-efficient vehicles, with engine capacities less than 1.6litres via its production plant in India that churns almost half of its global production.
On his part, President Akufo-Addo was encouraged by the decision of Suzuki to want to put up shop in Ghana, saying, the development was a welcomed one, as foreign direct investments into Ghana would spur development and economic growth.
“We are interested in developing a vibrant and dynamic automobile industry in Ghana; we have made several initiatives towards that end and finally, I believe we are now ready to outdoor our automotive policy, which will then let everybody know exactly, people like you if you want to come to Ghana, what is available to you in terms of government support, incentives and the rest of it, and also the obligation that will be on you if you wanted the Ghanaian space”, he said.
Egypt, Nissan partner in establishing new automobiles factory
A man walks under the logo of Nissan Motor Co at the company’s showroom in Yokohama, south of Tokyo February 8, 2013. REUTERS/Toru Hanai/File Photo
CAIRO – 19 March 2019: Minister of Public Business Sector Hesham Tawfik announced that his ministry signed a memorandum of understanding with Japan’s Nissan Motor Company to establish a new factory to manufacture and export automobiles in Ameriya district of Alexandria.
According to the minister, the ministry asked the Japanese company to use Nasr auto-assembling factory and turn it into an export hub through exporting around 50,000 cars annually.
This came during the minister’s speech at the opening session of the fourth edition of the Portfolio Egypt Conference 2019, titled “Opportunities Blunted by Risks” and organized by al-Mal GTM. More than 500 firms, investment banks and businessmen participated in the conference.
He added that Egypt has two tire factories that, together, manufacture some 990,000 tires annually, most of which are agricultural tractors’ tires.
He pointed out that the ministry is indeed facing a real crisis in terms of marketing, adding that they are working to establish a marketing entity to promote their products at home and abroad.
Earlier this month, Nissan Motor Corporation affirmed its desire to consolidate its presence in the Egyptian market and cooperate with the Egyptian government in carrying out its ambitious plans for the development of the local auto industry to place Egypt among the leading countries in the field of making and exporting automobiles.
In an official meeting between Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli and Senior Vice President of Nissan and Chairman of its Management Committee for Africa, Middle East, and India Peyman Kargar, Madbouli said that his government is ready to offer all possible incentives to encourage serious companies like Nissan to expand their businesses and pump more investments in the Egyptian market.
– EGYPT TODAY
UK, East and Southern Africa sign trade deal
Ahead of its March 29 exit from the European Union (EU), the United Kingdom has signed a deal with countries from East and Southern Africa to explore new and continue to trade with the region.
The UK-Eastern and Southern Africa (ESA) Trade Continuity Agreement is meant to replicate the Economic Partnership Agreement that the East African Community is yet to sign with the European Union, due to disagreements among members on its viability.
Yash Tandon, an academic, civil society activist and former executive director of the South Centre, a Geneva-based intergovernmental think tank, said the ESA deal that the Theresa May administration has pushed is a “panic measure” as the clock ticks to March 29.
The agreement is meant to ensure that trade between the UK and the African countries will not be disrupted by Brexit, and will allow the ESA signatories to continue duty-free, quota-free exports to Britain while they also reciprocate by lowering their tariffs on UK exports on a phased basis.
UK Trade Minister George Hollingbery signed the UK-ESA agreement in London on January 31 with Mauritius, Seychelles, Comoros, Zimbabwe and Madagascar.
Although EAC countries are not yet part of the UK-ESA deal, trade experts say that Britain is considering a special arrangement with Kenya, for which the EAC-EU agreement offers more benefits than for its peers in the bloc.
The EPA Monitoring website said on February 4 that “some form of special arrangement is under consideration for Kenya.”
The website says the move could be attributed to the complications facing Kenya in signing any trade agreement without the concurrence of its fellow EAC Customs Union members — Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi and South Sudan — all of which are least developed countries.
Apparently, the UK has previously committed to roll over the existing EU duty-free quota-free market access regime for LDCs as a unilaterally UK-only scheme, an arrangement that would lock out Kenya, which is categorised as a developing country.
Critics argue that the UK singling out countries that are desperate to sign and leaving others out is a repetition of its divide-and-rule strategy.
Meanwhile, Kenya has four months to find out the fate of the EPA with Europe, after the recently concluded East African Community Summit gave Tanzania — the harshest critic of the deal — time to consult and make a final decision.
Even as they set a four-month window to clarify pertinent issues, it is apparent that some partners are ready to sign the controversial trade pact, which will see the region liberalise its trade by 82 per cent.
However, Tanzania remains opposed to the proposal tabled by Kenya that partner states willing to sign may do so as individuals rather than as a bloc — a principle referred to as “variable geometry.”
The Principle of Variable Geometry is provided for in Article 7.1(e) of the EAC Treaty to allow “for progression in co-operation among groups within the Community for wider integration schemes in various fields and at different speeds.”
But the Southern and Eastern Africa Trade Information and Negotiation Institute (Seatini) cautions that the variable geometry formula invoked for a trade deal with the EU will impair the EAC’s regional integration.
“The proposal to evoke variable geometry in the EPA is a misapplication of this principle,” Seatini said.
“There is no doubt that this principle applies to integration within the EAC and does not apply to third parties. If wrongly evoked as proposed by Kenya, it will lead to unintended consequences of fusing the EAC with the EU Free Trade Area.”
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