The Federal Government has stated that the continuing implementation of the Nigerian Automotive Industry Development Plan (NAIDP) has taken its planned course, noting there’s no plan to change the implementation procedure of certain aspects of the policy.
The National Automotive Council (NAC) said in a statement yesterday, that government had not reneged on its promise to shift the implementation process of certain aspects of the NAIDP till January 2015 as alleged in the press, noting that the application of the levy exemption was only being misinterpreted.
The Director-General of NAC, Engr. Aminu Jalal, said, “Government had already shifted the implementation of the full tariff on new vehicles from January 10, 2014 to 1st July, 2014 to enable importers clear vehicles they had ordered at the old duty rates. Government only extended the concession on the importation of used vehicles only by another six months till 31st December, 2014.
“This was because up to three out of four imported cars are used and time needs to be given to the assembly plants to produce affordable vehicles to replace the imported used ones. Unfortunately, this levy on new cars was misinterpreted to mean that all vehicles, including new FBU imports were exempt from levies until 31stDecember 2014.”
He added, “This could not have been the case because existing and new entrants into the assembling process under the NAIDP had started to roll out new products at competitive rates. As a result of continuous inflow of new FBUs without restriction occasioned by this misinterpretation, assemblers began to cut down on orders for assembly kits and this has the potential to derail the policy.
“Action taken was therefore urgent. Government decided to clear this misinterpretation. Given this clarification, the Nigerian Custom Service (NCS) has been thus guided in their operations. Council wishes to reassure Nigerians that new vehicles have been stockpiled under the NAIDP awaiting buyers and there is therefore no need to fear adverse rise in prices. “
The DG explained that a special package under the NAIDP was being worked out for dealers who had made some commitments to enable them import new FBUs at concessionary import duty rates (minus the levy) until they set up local assembly operations.
He stated, “The response to the policy by investors has exceeded our expectations. The existing assembly plants have a new lease of life, with VON assembling the Nissan and Hyundai vehicles and PAN resuming assembly of Peugeot cars.
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