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Wednesday, 6 July 2022

GB Auto to open passenger car factory in Sadat City next year

GB Auto is working on transforming a brownfield site in Sadat City into a passenger car and light commercial vehicle factory, Marina Kamal, GB Auto’s IR head, told Enterprise. The factory will assemble some 50k cars for Chinese brands Changan and Haval (which GB Auto added to its portfolio last year) every year and is expected to start operating in November 2023, Kamal said, adding that it is expected to create 1k jobs. Contractor Hassan Allam Construction has begun work at the site, she said, without disclosing how much is being invested in the project.

The case against imports: The automotive industry has seen better days, with car sales falling for three straight months from March to May. A large contributor to that had been Several foreign car manufacturers have suspended sales to Egypt after a change to how imports are paid for left local dealers incapable of purchasing vehicles, industry sources told Enterprise last month, with one estimating that some 29k vehicles are stranded at ports. This followed new rules handed down by the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) in March requiring importers to use letters of credit (L/Cs) to purchase non-essential goods, instead of documentary collection.

A new day for the auto sector? Fortunately, a number of policy decisions have been made to get the sector out of its slump, starting with the adoption of the new automotive strategy and its incentives for domestic assembly. Prime Minister Moustafa Madbouly on Monday directed his ministers, the central bank, and the banking sector to coordinate on setting up “a mechanism for the orderly release of car shipments” from ports.

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