President Akufo-Addo Outdoors Kia Assembling Plant

President Akufo-Addo yesterday commissioned yet another vehicle assembling plant in Ghana, Kia Vehicle Assembly Plant.

It brings to nine the total number of vehicle assembling plants set up in Ghana under the Akufo-Addo-led NPP administration.

The rest include VW, Toyota, Isuzu, Nissan, Peugeot, Hyundai, Shanghai and SE Auto which were established earlier.

Speaking at a colourful ceremony at Amasaman in Accra yesterday, the President assured players in the domestic vehicle assembling industry in Ghana that his administration will pursue policies that will stimulate patronage of their vehicles by both government and the citizenry.

He stressed the fact that government alone cannot purchase all the vehicles being assembled in Ghana, and thus emphasised the need to develop policies that will enable the ordinary citizen to buy locally assembled vehicles.

That notwithstanding, he said, “I have directed the Chief of Staff at the Office of the President, the prioritisation of the procurement of domestically assembled vehicles by state institutions to fulfil government’s commitment in patronising made in Ghana products.

To stimulate demand for domestically assembled vehicles, President Akufo-Addo indicated that his administration “will soon be rolling out an asset based vehicle financing scheme as it exists in other developed economies to afford Ghanaians the opportunity to purchase vehicles from the Ghana Automotive Development Programme.”

That, he said, was part of the reasons for 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 them affordable.

“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 and to take advantage of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) whose Secretariat is located in our capital, Accra to exploit the bigger African market for domestically assembled vehicles,” he said.

Meanwhile, the President has also hinted that the Minister of Trade and Industry will soon be submitting to Cabinet for approval the Ghana Automotive Component Manufacturing Policy (ACMP), which will outline incentives to attract investors into the component manufacturing sector.

The policy, according to President Akufo-Addo, will also support “artisans in Suame, Kokompe, and other enclaves to upgrade their capacity to fit seriously in the automotive industry.”