Senate endorses new auto policy

The Senate Committee on Trade and Investment on Tuesday tacitly endorsed the new Federal Government policy aimed at transforming the automotive industry. The committee met industry stakeholders at the National Assembly to aggregate the opinions of automotive industry players on the controversial reform policy.

The committee’s Chairman, Esther Nenadi Usman, said the views expressed by stakeholders showed that everybody agreed with the new policy.

Usman said her committee would ensure that the policy was implemented without imposing further burden on Nigerians.

The senator said it was obvious, from the summation of presentations before the committee that “everyone agrees that the automotive policy was welcomed and the implementation accepted.”

Usman added: “Everyone accepts that the policy would ensure that cars are manufactured and assembled in the country. But what everyone is saying is that all known sharp practices by operators before the date of implementation should be discouraged.”

The Minister of Trade and Investment, Mr. Olusegun Aganga, allayed the fears of stakeholders.

The minister assured that government would be fair to everyone in the implementation of the policy. He said: “It is normal to have teething problems but the policy has addressed all the issues raised.”

The minister explained that as part of government’s effort to ensure fairness, operators would be part of the monitoring committee to be set up.

The Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA), however, requested the extension of the February 2014 implementation take off date for the new policy.

It said this would enable operators in the industry to adjust.

Copyright Ships & Ports Ltd. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit given to as the source.