Minister of Trade and Industry Amr Nassar stated that the automotive directives will not be cancelled, and that rumours about cancelling the initiative are not true.
Nassar pointed out that the automotive industry and its components are one of the most important files of the ministry—like the rest of the industries—where a review and evaluation of the status of the automotive industry and the feeder industries are being carried out, in order to achieve a clear vision for a better future, in terms of efficiency and effectiveness of the automotive industry and its components in Egypt.
A government source said that the ministry is still working on the formulation of the strategy, which will ensure the deepening of domestic manufacturing and rehabilitation of Egypt to become a centre to manufacture and assemble cars within the coming period.
He told Daily News Egypt that the ministry has been working for three years on the directives and formed a committee to discuss the deepening of domestic manufacturing in the automotive industry.
Tamer Shafei, head of the Spare Parts Industries Division at the Chamber of Engineering Industries, said that the abandoning of the automotive industry’s strategy and not taking measures to protect the national industry would eliminate the automotive and feeding industries in Egypt, as the entry of European cars into Egypt without customs is set to start from January 2019, according to the European Partnership Agreement.
An official source in the parliament said that the automotive directives are not listed on the industry committee meetings with the minister in the coming period.
Khaled Saad, general manager of Brilliance Automotive Company and acting general manager of the Egyptian Automobile Manufacturers Association (EAMA), said that no official document has yet been sent to confirm the strategy of the automotive industry and the use of specialised free zones. He expected to cancel the strategy, especially after the decision of the minister of trade and industry this month to reduce the proportion of the domestic component in the automotive directives.
“If this decision is true, it will be good for the automotive sector to turn Egypt into a manufacturing country,” he said. Saad stressed that the state must support the new factories in all aspects, including lands, laws, and facilities.
Government sources said in a press statement Monday, that the cabinet decided to abandon the automotive directives and allocate land to establish specialised industrial zones for all companies and feeding industries. These zones will be subject to special customs and investment fees to attract automakers. Shafei pointed out that the automotive division will meet next week to discuss the developments of the strategy.
Additional reporting by Abdel Razik Shwaikhi and Ahmed Sabry