Renault to set up plant in Pakistan by 2018
The Dollar Business Bureau
French car major Renault has decided to set up a manufacturing plant in Pakistan by 2018.
Pakistan's car market is presently dominated by Suzuki, Toyota and Honda, which have been often accused of colluding to fix prices for lower-quality versions of their models.
"Renault has decided to invest in Pakistan. They will start assembling cars in Pakistan by 2018," Pakistan’s Board of Investment said in a statement.
Board Chairman Miftah Ismail has been in discussion with several other foreign car makers including Fiat, Nissan, Peugeot, Renault and Volkswagen. In September, Ismail took with him Pakistan’s Finance Minister Ishaq Dar to France, where he met Renault leaderships and persuaded them to invest in Pakistan.
Confirming the development on Twitter, Renault described it as an "exclusive nego(tiation) to develop our brand in Pakistan, including a manufacturing plant".
"Groupe Renault confirms it has entered into exclusive negotiations with Ghandhara and Al Futtaim Groups to develop the Renault brand in Pakistan, including a manufacturing plant on the Ghandara site in Karachi," Renault said.
Currently, very few car makers are operational in Pakistan. Several international car makers are reluctant to shift their manufacturing bases in this South Asian nation due to political and economic disturbances. At present, car buyers in Pakistan have to wait up to four months for a vehicle even after making full payment since demand outstrips supply.
With an aim to boost competition and slash prices for local drivers, the Pakistani government has in March announced that foreign car makers who are seeking to enter the market could import duty-free equipment for their plants.
Last year, Volkswagen also visited Pakistan to explore the marker. However, the German carmaker has not announced any plans for this market.