KARACHI: The local automobile industry will not oppose the import of completely knocked down (CKD) vehicles from India, according to Indus Motors Limited Marketing Director Ali Asghar Jamali. He was speaking to the media on the launch of the Toyota Dream Car contest, held simultaneously at Toyota Central Motors and Toyota Society Motors, on Sunday. He said that the local industry had already conveyed its views on awarding the most favored nation status to India, and recommended that the import of completely built up units not be allowed.
“We are ready to compete with Indian automobiles, as we believe that Pakistani assembled cars are no less in standard and can easily compete with them”, Jamali said.
The auto industry has welcomed trade liberalisation with India, but has some reservations about import of certain finished products which are also produced in Pakistan. They say if Pakistan starts importing finished products, growth in the local industry will grind to a halt.
According to Jamali, the government has assured auto parts manufacturers that the domestic industry will be protected and a negative list maintained, despite recent moves to further open up commerce between the two countries. The negative list contains items on which the government imposes tariff barriers to protect the local industry.
“The automobile industry is satisfied with the assurance given by Commerce Secretary Zafar Mahmood and as long as the local vendors do not get hurt, we will not oppose trade liberalisation with India”, he said.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 14th, 2012.