The Ministry of Industry said that though the metal and engineering industry is at infant stage, it is playing crucial role in building the country’s economy and advancing the technological capability of the nation.
Speaking at the signing of automotive assembly partnership agreement between the local Belay Ab Motors Plc. and the Korean Car Manufacturing Company KIA Motors Corporation yesterday, State Minister Dr. Alemu Sime said that the government is committed to harness the manufacturing sector and more specifically the automotive industry by increasing investment options for it creates huge employment opportunities.
He said the agreement made between the two companies has immense contribution to develop the manufacturing sector and create considerable local jobs and market opportunities.
Dr. Alemu also said as public and private sector spend huge foreign currency to import semi-processed and finished products such as vehicles, partnership of this kind will form new paradigm shift in reducing foreign currency expenditure for car importation.
Belay Ab Motors General Manager Fekadu Girma said that his company has been at the forefront in strengthening the automotive industry in the country since 2006. “This agreement would accelerate the growth of local manufacturing industries.”
According to Fekadu, the assembly facility will have a capacity to assemble 12 cars per day in a single shift and 3,000 KIA vehicles annually.
Fekadu said the company would employ 100 fresh graduates from vocational and technical colleges. It was learnt the vehicle assembly plant is scheduled to be completed in January 2017.
KIA Motors Middle East and Africa Regional Headquarters President Soonnam Lee said that as the first car assembly plant in East Africa, KIA would bring the global automotive brand to Ethiopia and enable Belay Ab Company build its production capacity to meet the growing global demand.