Launch of new car manufacturing plant boosts investor confidence

The auto industry contributes 7.5% of SA’s GDP, employing around 113 000 people directly.

The launch of Isuzu Motors South Africa’s newly purchased vehicle manufacturing plant in Struandale, Port Elizabeth has boosted investor confidence in South Africa, according to Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies.

“We know that this investment will mean that 1 000 jobs in the facility will be saved and there are 3 000 jobs in the direct supply chain and many thousands more in the supply companies which means that jobs will continue to be guaranteed in the future,” he said.

Isuzu purchased the car manufacturing plant from General Motors last year following its disinvestment from the country while also purchasing the remaining 30% shareholding in the Isuzu Truck South Africa joint venture.

The plant will build Isuzu pick-ups and trucks.

Reaffirming the company’s commitment to growing its business in South Africa, Isuzu Motors Japan president and representative director, Masanori Katayama, commented: “This is the first commercial and light commercial vehicle manufacturing operation outside of Japan in which we have acquired 100% ownership.

“Our decision with regards to South Africa demonstrates the confidence we have in this market and is also indicative of our longer-term view that South Africa will serve as an important base for our future growth on the African continent.”

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