EDB urges China to invest in automobile industry

ISLAMABAD: Engineering Development Board (EDB) has urged the Chinese automobile manufacturers to avail themselves of investment opportunities in Pakistan. A two-member Chinese diplomatic team led by Zhou Zhencheng, Economic and Commercial Counsellor called on Chief Executive Officer EDB,Aitazaz A. Niazi here on Tuesday.CEO, EDB highlighted that opportunities exist in setting up a low price small car unit, manufacturing car sub-assemblies components presently imported and setting up of tractor assembly plant.

He offered to assist Chinese manufacturers in finding local partners for them, as the government was interested to promote competition in auto sector.A detailed presentation on automobile sector of Pakistan was given to the visitors and informed that Japanese car manufacturers have 100 percent share in the local car market against 45 percent in motorcycle sector.He informed that Chinese share in motorcycle is 55 percent adding that about 133,972 cars were manufactured during 2010-11, while motorcycles production was 1,535,427 units.Referring to new entrants’ policy of the government, it was explained  that any manufacturer can invest in Pakistan under Auto Industry Development Programme (AIDP) or the Tariff Base System (TBS).

AIDP facilitate new entrants to import 100 percent CKD kit at the leviable customs duty for a period of three years from the start of assembly/manufacturing.The government intends to make the existing policy regime more flexible for the new entrants in order to attract foreign investment.  Amended policy is expected soon.The Chinese diplomat informed that a global auto show was being organized in Shanghai in coming September and invited CEO, EDB to participate in it so  that he could personally interact with Chinese manufacturers.However, they assured that Chinese manufacturers would be persuaded to explore Pakistani market. – APP