President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has assured players in Ghana’s domestic vehicle assembling industry of the government’s determination to develop policies that would stimulate and engender the purchase of vehicles produced from the assembling plants in the country.
President Akufo-Addo said the government is mindful of the fact that the state alone cannot purchase sufficient numbers of vehicles to be produced from the assembly plants and would require Ghanaians to also patronize these vehicles.
Addressing participants at the commissioning ceremony of Rana Motors KIA assembly plant at Amasaman in the Greater Accra Region on Tuesday, President Akufo-Addo said he acknowledges “that the critical component for harnessing the full potential of the automotive industry is demand for assembled vehicles.”
As already known, President Akufo-Addo has directed the Chief of Staff at the office of the President to prioritise the procurement of domestically assembled vehicles by state institutions to fulfil the government’s commitment to patronising made-in-Ghana products.
But to stimulate demand for locally assembled vehicles, President Akufo-Addo said the government would soon roll out an asset-based vehicle financing scheme to afford Ghanaians the opportunity to purchase vehicles from locally assembled plants in the country.
“We have also shown commitment by implementing the zero-rating of VAT on the sale of domestically assembled vehicles. This means that there is no VAT on the sale of domestically assembled vehicles even to the end user to make domestically assembled vehicles affordable,” President Akufo-Addo said.
On the implementation of outstanding provisions within the Customs Amendment Act (2020), President Akufo-Addo said he has asked the Minister for Finance to submit the required legislative instruction proposing the implementation start date with these outstanding provisions of the Acts on the resumption of Parliament.
“The implementation of these outstanding provisions will trigger the full implementation of the Ghana automotive development policy and drive further investment into the industry,” President Akufo-Addo pointed out.
“We will continue to do our part to position Ghana as a strategic partner in helping the continent achieve the target of assembling 1.5 million vehicles per annum by the end of 2023 as projected by the Association of African Automobile Manufacturers.
That commitment, according to the President, would enable them to take advantage of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) to exploit the bigger African market for domestically assembled vehicles.
He also hinted that the Minister of Trade and Industry would soon submit to Cabinet for approval the Ghana automotive component manufacturing policy (ACMP), which would outline incentives to attract investors into the component manufacturing sector.
The policy, according to President Akufo-Addo, would also support “artisans in Suame, Kokompe and other enclaves to upgrade their capacity to fit seriously in the automotive industry.”
“It is the government’s hope that the incentives granted Rana Motors will translate into competitive pricing of vehicles for the Ghanaian consumer. We look forward to the transitioning of this assembly plant into a fully integrated vehicle production plant in Ghana,” President Akufo-Addo said.
“The project is yet another sign of the strong relations that exist between the Republic of Ghana and the Republic of Korea, which we appreciate very much and are determined to advance and deepen,” he added.
Deputy Minister for Trade and Industry, Micheal Baafi, said that the coming on board of the KIA assembly plant brings to three such assembling plants established in the country to produce global vehicle brands in Ghana.
He also noted that currently nine different brands of vehicles are being produced in Ghana; VW, Toyota, Isuzu, Nissan, Peugeot, Hyundai, Shanghai, SE Auto and KIA.
Rex Mainoo Yeboah, ISD