Having adopted a new automotive policy to attract automakers to the country, Nigeria is looking to foster increased local production and provide more accessible vehicles for local commuters. Volkswagen is taking advantage of the developments, and has announced plans to establish a new manufacturing facility in the country.
It’s been nearly two decades since Volkswagen has sold cars in the Nigeria, when the automaker elected to leave the market following a turmoil surrounding its partnership with the country’s government. Now, Volkswagen has partnered with Dubai-based Stallion Group to be its official distributor in the Nigeria, often referred to as the Giant of Africa due to its large population and economy.
Nigeria’s new automotive policy has been deemed a success, as it has brought about home-grown automakers, given previously-established marques a reason to stay, and spurred the re-introduction of brands that previously left the market. According to the National Automotive Council in the country, the new policy has resulted in roughly a 20 percent decrease in vehicle imports.
For its part, Volkswagen has made the largest commitment to the country as of now, but other automakers have also welcomed the news, including French automaker Peugeot, which announced plans to re-start its manufacturing plant in Norther Nigeria. Hyundai is another automaker contributing to the resurgence of the Nigerian automotive sector, as it announced the first-ever Nigerian-made Hyundais this past summer.
According to comments from local publication Ventures Africa, the policy was initially received with mixed skepticism. But as time has moved forward, it has clearly resulted in a healthy growth for the country’s automotive sector. The only question now is which vehicles Nigerian car buyers will choose to purchase. But that’s a good problem to have.