Private Car plant opens in Nigeria
Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing Company Limited (IVM) based in Nnewi, Nigeria has been opened for operation and president of Nigeria was present to cut the tape. The first of its kind in Nigeria, Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing Company is a privately owned company and the CEO Innocent Chukwuma is the principal investor. Many important government and business individuals garthered at the opening ceremony including the governor of Anambra state and some of its cabinet members.
There was a huge satisfaction from the guests and mood was festive, as the whole ceremony proceeded. This is a booast for private industry in Nigeria especially in the Auto industry where Nigeria is badly lagging behind when compared to other emerging nations. This is not the only car plant in Nigeria, there was already french based peugeot car plant but it was wholly controlled by the government of Nigeria with its foreign joint partner. Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing Company do not have a partner with the government rather an independent company that is 100% owned by private individual.
President Jonathan said, “I am indeed happy that Innoson is not just assembling parts that are imported from other countries. From all indications, it is only the engine that is imported. Apart from that, every other thing is manufactured in Nigeria,” and stressed that it will help to lessen unemployment and trigger economic growth in the state. He further stressed that government economic policy was in line with development of private industry and private enterprise.
According to the CEO of the motor industry, Mr. Innocent Chukwuma said that the car plant employed almost 1,600 Nigerians together with some expatriates while the operation sister company at Enugu employed 1800 Nigerians.
pic: Innoson Motors
He said, “Mr President, with adequate encouragement, we can go beyond our present level of operation, and when we operate fully, the auto plant alone can employ as many as 3,200. We want to appreciate the example of the Enugu State Governor, Mr. Sullivan Chime (who has placed an order for hundreds of buses and refuse disposal vans from Innoson) and pray that every tier of government from Federal to Local Government and government parastatals, should emulate this patriotic act,” he pleaded to President Jonathan.
Most of the raw materials were raised in Nigeria and all the car parts were made in Nigeria except the imported engine blocks. Innonson car plant makes seater- buses, double cabin pick up vans and SUVs which were on displayed on the opening day.
Nigerian government needs to make a serious decision on moving forward with its iron and steel industry by privatization and giving chance to superior technical and management expertise from the private industry. To improve automobile industry in the country engine blocks must be manufactured in the country. With improvement in the electric power sector and iron-steel industry, Nigeria will join the rest of the productive vehicle manufacturing countries.