Pak auto industry among main beneficiaries of CPEC: PCJCCI President

LAHORE: The automobile industry is an integral part for development of highways, roads, and infrastructure and it has great significance in China–Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) related projects, Pak-China Joint Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCJCCI) said.

“Pakistan’s automobile sector is vast and we can attain contemporary manufacturing of cars with the help and modern technology from Chinese companies,” PCJCCI said.

Many Chinese companies are establishing their commercial truck and pickup assembly plant in Pakistan with Pakistani partners, and it would certainly change the horizon of Pakistan automobile industry, the joint chamber added.

“CPEC projects are strategically very important and beneficial for the economies of both countries and Pakistan’s automobile industry is one of the main beneficiaries of CPEC,” said PCJCCI president Wang Zihai while addressing a think tank session held at PCJCCI secretariat.

China-Pakistan automobile cooperation is a win-win choice and new Chinese automobile entrants in Pakistan would bring more options to local customers, he added.

“One Belt-One Road is developed and started its operation, through which Pakistan import automotive parts and ckd kits from China on cheaper cost.”

Due to unemployment factor, Pakistan has low labor costs, so Chinese origin vehicles could be developed locally in little investment. The vehicles could capture the local market if those were sold in economic prices to Pakistani people, he added.

Zihai said considering high rate of inflation in Pakistan, the government should initiate low-cost and budget friendly vehicle manufacturing for the ease of people.

Senior vice president PCJCCI Ehsan Choudhry said, “CPEC opened doors for Chinese companies to come here ‘BIG’ and they are willing to invest in Pakistani automobile sector.”

He observed that one of the automobile giants of China, Chery launched its new RHD strategy in 2019 and selected seven countries as key potential markets for RHD, including Pakistan.

It has partnered with Ghandhara Nissan Ltd to invest Rs2.4 billion in Pakistan production of Tiggo Series SUVs in January 2021, he added.

“At present, Chery Automobile products include saloon cars and SUVs. Choosing to manufacture SUV models in Pakistan is based on the fact that the global consumption trend is upgrading from cars to SUV, SUV is more suitable for Pakistan road conditions, and Chinese companies are competitive in the SUV market segment, etc.”

Vice president PCJCCI Sarfaraz Butt pointed out that a spokesman for Brilliance China Auto, German luxury carmaker BMW’s Chinese mainland partner mentioned the Chinese automakers were planning to expand their business network in Pakistan.