To cushion the effect of Fuel subsidy removal on Nigerians, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has been advised to make locally assembled/manufactured commercial vehicles affordable to Nigerians by activating the Automotive Credit Purchase Scheme, an essential provision of the National Automobile Industry Development Plan (NAIDP).
Making the appeal in an exclusive interview with Motoring World International, the former DG of National Automotive Design and Development Council (NADDC), Mr. Lukman Mamudu proposed that the anticipated N800 Billion Naira savings from fuel subsidy removal be injected into automotive credit purchase scheme.
According to him, commercial Bus operators and haulage companies should primarily be the beneficiary of this scheme, as individuals may not be able to sustain repayment from meager salaries.
“By so doing,” he reasoned, “Transportation cost will drop and create culture of bus riding in the country. We do so gladly abroad. Only made in Nigeria vehicles should be sourced under the scheme. This will quickly revive the automotive industry, drive demand for their products and lead to massive employment along the value chain.”
To this end, Mamudu advised the president to immediately allow the auto industry stakeholders to immediately review the NAIDP towards accelerated passage and assent into law.
It would be recalled that to activate auto industry development in Nigeria, former president Goodluck Jonathan’s regime handed over to the immediate past regime of president Muhammadu Buhari the NAIDP.
Aside incentives to local auto assemblers and manufacturers, the NAIDP also contains automobile Finance Scheme aimed at making locally made vehicles affordable, thereby increasing sales volume and encouraging OEMs (Original Equipment manufacturers) to set up parts/content manufacturing plants in Nigeria.
Unfortunately, while the national assembly passed the bill into law late 2017, the document failed to secure the investors’ confidence it was meant to achieve, as the president was advised against assenting the bill.
Auto Industry analysts, stakeholders and experts, have therefore advocated that President Tinubu give the bill an accelerated passage and signature to safe humongous amount of foreign exchange that Nigerians spend on importation of used vehicles into the country.
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