Stake-holders in the Nigerian auto sector are currently agitating for the Federal Government to stop the planned importation of used Chinese cars into the country.
Vehicle assemblers, car dealers and relevant organized groups, have resolved to oppose the planned importation of used Chinese vehicles.
About two months ago, China’s Ministry of Commerce announced that it would soon begin the shipment of used cars to 10 global markets including Nigeria.
The action is aimed at driving China’s vehicle sale. According to the statement, sales contracted last year for the first time since 1990. The report specifically indicated that the first batch of 300 used Chinese cars would arrive in Nigeria soon.
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China’s Electric Cars Agenda
However, some stakeholders in Nigeria’s auto-sector would not accept that reason being proposed by China’s Ministry of Commerce.
“The country is going electric and they have a time frame to remove those fuel-based vehicles from their country.”
Jaiyesimi, who is also vice-chairman of the auto group of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, said that used Chinese vehicles “wouldn’t help our system” and warned those concerned with the implementation of the auto policy to be guided by patriotism to avert economic catastrophe resulting from self-serving actions.
“20% of the 260 million vehicles being pushed out of China might end up in Nigeria. This is expected to come with some attendant negative consequences”, Jaiyesimi opined.
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Nigeria: A Dumping Ground For Fossil-Fuel Cars
He added that Nigeria should not be one of the places for China to dump its millions of used vehicles. He also called for an “immediate action through the imposition of heavy tariffs that will make bringing them in unattractive.”
According to The Executive Director, Safety Beyond Borders, Mr Patrick Adenusi, is of the view that importing used cars from China is a national shame, adding that “the (automobile) safety standard in China is not at par with what is obtainable in the West.” He said any automobile product not fit for American or European markets should not come to Nigeria.
He said, “In the comity of nations, Nigeria is not backward; it is the most populous black nation in the world; she deserves some respect from others.”
The Executive Secretary, Arrive Alive Road Safety Initiative, Ike Okonkwo, said, “I will not advise anybody to buy a used Chinese car. To buy such vehicles will bring unbearable pain in terms of maintenance and repairs as a result of frequent breakdown.”
Despite the opposition to the plan, many Nigerian firms interested in marketing the low-cost vehicles are reportedly making inquiries.