Nissan is set to open a vehicle assembly plant in Ghana with its longtime partner, Japan Motors Trading Company Ltd. (JMTC) appointed as its local partner in all new vehicle assembly facility in Tema, Ghana.
The appointment is a result of a memorandum of understanding signed between Nissan and the government in 2018 to lay the foundation for a sustainable automotive manufacturing industry in the country.
The first model to be assembled at the new facility will be the all-new Nissan Navara Pickup, unveiled by Nissan earlier this month.
Speaking at an event to announce the deal Mr Nouhad Kalmoni, Executive Director, Sales and Marketing West Africa, JMTC underscored that the assembly of vehicles by Nissan in the country was to build on its leadership in manufacturing of vehicles through supporting the government to create the environment for a successful automotive manufacturing industry.
Japan Motors he said was proud to see its association with Nissan bear much fruit in the interest of Ghana as it leads this innovation.
“Ghana has now entered a new dawn by having partners like Nissan not only for assembling of vehicles but also have Nissan make the country its hub for sales and marketing in West Africa,” he said.
Managing Director of Japan Motors, Mr Salem Kalmoni thanked Nissan for the trust and assured that with JMTC’s long experience in the motor industry it has the financial strength and the stamina to carry through this great venture.
He recalled Japan Motors as the first company in Ghana to import Japanese made vehicles in 1958.
“Ten years after we were awarded the Nissan franchise, in February 1968, Japan Motors commissioned a vehicle manufacturing plant. The vehicle manufacturing continued for 12 years until it came to an abrupt stop in 1980. The vehicles produced then, were the pick-up, the pick-up people-carrier, and 120Y Datsun saloon car. As such, what we have done before as a nation and as a company, we can do again today and even better,” he said.
Mr Kalmoni admitted that the company was aware the Ghana Automotive Development Policy (GADP) envisages the creation of jobs and technology transfer as such JMTC’s plant will operate at the beginning as a Semi Knocked Down assembly level with one shift and will create 40 new jobs.
Mr Shinkichi Izumi, Managing Director of Nissan South Africa was optimistic Ghana presents a great opportunity for investment, partnership and growth for Nissan.
Mr Alan Kyerematen, Minister for Trade & Industry underscored the announcement of the Nissan vehicle assembly plant as a giant step towards the development of Ghana’s automobile industry and to create the path of becoming the new centre of attraction and automotive hub for the continent.