Loaded containers at Tin Can 2nd gate last week
The Director-General, National Automotive Design and Development Council (NADDC), Jelani Aliyu, said the importation of used vehicles into the country was a setback for the local auto market.
Aliyu, who spoke at the recently-concluded 19th International Auto Show in Abuja, said the country could not keep importing used vehicles as it is hurting the economy.
He said: “Nigeria must develop its local auto industry like South Africa and India did. The government is committed to the development of local auto industry.
“The government has trained 3,200 youths in mechatronics and has signed agreements with some auto companies to manufacture vehicles locally to create jobs for the youth.
“The trend of vehicle production must be reversed, more of these vehicles are assembled here in Nigeria. Already production of vehicles is going on in Nigeria, but the government wants to see production on a higher level.”
Also speaking on the occasion, the Managing Director of Elizade Autoland, Demola Ade-Ojo, said importation of ‘tokumbo’ vehicles is affecting the market for new brand cars in the country.
Ade-Ojo said there has to be a policy to make brand new vehicles available to Nigerians, and this should include a policy that will create a market for used vehicles that originate within Nigeria and not imported.
He said as long as used vehicles are imported into the country and prices of new vehicles remained high, new vehicles will never be able to compete favourably with imported used ones.