Managing Director of Volkswagen Nigeria, Tokunbo Aromolaran, has said that Nigeria spends about N1.4trillion yearly on importation of used vehicles from different countries of the world.
Speaking in Abuja, at a two-day workshop for heads of mass transit companies in Nigeria, Aromolaran, who delivered a paper titled; ‘Local Demand for Bus and Assembly Plants as Driver of Safer and Better Mass Transit Operation in Nigeria, described the situation as totally unacceptable and inimical to the growth of the economy.
He explained that the importation of used cars has continued to create unnecessary demand for foreign exchange to finance importation of used vehicles. He added that used car importation is the reason that local manufacture of cars in Nigeria has been a challenge.
According to him, until made in Nigeria cars are encouraged, Nigerians would continue to depend on foreign countries to meet their automobile needs at exorbitant prices, saying however that Volkswagen of Nigeria (VON) has continued to advocate manufacture of made in Nigeria vehicles.
While saying that efforts are on to inculcate 100 per cent local content of car manufacture component in the country, Aromolaran however said that, engine chasis are not produced in the country but sourced from Hyundai
Nigerians, he said, needs to give locally made cars a chance, explaining that the technology for car manufacture in the country will improve over time, as this was how South Africa started 10-12 years ago, but are now net exporters of quality automobiles to different countries of the world.