[dropcap]K[/dropcap]ia Motors Nigeria has said it plans to utilise over 90% of locally sourced content in its production of its made-in-Nigeria cars.
The company said in statement that, “The trajectory growth of the locally assembled KIA cars and its top-notch quality built to the exacting standard of the global brand has galvanised the company to explore local content in its assembling chain and influenced its plan to reach a 90% local content utilisation in the production of its cars.”
The company said its ultra-high-tech and state of the art plant in Lagos has produced over 4500 units of cars since its launch in the first half of 2015. “The plant produces all 9 models in its plant, worthy of note within its foray of the made in Nigeria Kia car is the 2016 Kia Sorento.”
Kia’s gritty and unwavering commitment in the production of made-in-Nigeria cars has continuously been at the fore of the management of Kia Motors Nigeria.
Outside Korea, the birth country of Kia, the automobile company has a long history of building locally to meet the specific needs of local customers with assembly operations, using ‘car kits’ sourced locally and from other parts of the world. “Aligning with this practice and geared towards advancing Nigeria’s economy to compete favourably among comity of Nations, Kia Motors Nigeria plans to have over 90% local content utilisation in Nigeria in its assembling process.”
In a statement by the Chief Commercial officer, Kia Motors Nigeria, Mr. Sandeep Malhotra said, “Nigeria remains an emerging and growing economy in the world with vast potentials for growth, despite its myriad of challenges the country promises a large economy of scale, hence it’s incumbent upon us as a local investor to help her realise its goals. As a company with an unswerving interest on the advancement of the nation’s economy, we have a plan to utilise 90% local content in our assembly process to help strengthen the economy. Buoyed by our increased acceptability among our valued customers in the last decade, we are now looking at further strengthening our foothold and expanding our reach in the localisation of our assembly plant.”
He said with its built-from-scratch assembly chain firmly in place and over a year of SKD production phase under its belt, Kia Motors Nigeria is now focus on the local content utilisation in its made in Nigeria Kia cars.
The plant in Lagos is progressing on schedule for the utilisation of local contents in its assembling process and currently sourced some of its parts including refrigerant, lubricant, and workshop consumables amongst others locally. The plant has a capacity to build up to 27,000 vehicles annually on flexible assembly lines that can manufacture several different models simultaneously to adapt to changes in buying trends.
Meanwhile, Kia Motors said it posts global sales of 214,219 vehicles in February 2016 for export sales, domestic sales and sales from overseas plants for passenger cars, recreational vehicles (RVs) and commercial vehicles, recording a total of 214,219 units sold.
This figure represents 2.6% year-on-year growth compared to the same month of 2015.
In February, Kia posted year-on-year sales increases in North America (12.2% growth with 54,118 units sold), Europe (11.0% growth with 43,216 units sold) and the domestic Korean market (10.5% growth with 39,110 units sold).
Cumulatively through the first two months of 2016, Kia’s global sales totaled 418,881 units for a year-on-year decrease of 0.5%. Korea (77,615 units sold), Europe (81,662 units sold) and North America (96,024 units sold) have seen a 7.7%, 6.7% and 6.4% rise in sales, respectively.
Kia’s bestselling model in overseas markets during February 2016 was the B-segment Rio (known as ‘K2’ in China) with 33,552 units sold. The Sportage compact CUV was the second best seller with 32,052 units sold, while the C-segment Cerato (known as ‘Forte’ or ‘K3’ in some markets), Optima D-segment sedan and Soul urban crossover followed with 22,452, 19,548 and 14,761 units sold, respectively.