Zambia’s celebrated UK-based Professor Clive Chirwa has announced that the AUVIV vehicle assembly plant will soon be launched in Kapiri Mposhi, Central Province that is expected to create about 1,000 jobs.
Prof Chirwa said during the unveiling of the new bus design that AUVIV is a global company manufacturing vehicles for the whole world.
He disclosed that the vehicle assembly plant is expected to begin operations in 2022, according to the company’s strategic plan.
“The reality is that this company is a global company manufacturing for the entire world. Zambia is one of the countries according to the company’s strategic plan where an assembly plant is earmarked. This will be in Kapiri Mposhi. This is where vehicle assemblies will be done from. There might be assemblies of perhaps not the entire vehicle but assemblies of AV electrical vehicle parts,” Prof Chirwa said.
“We are a private company, entirely a private company, therefore, we don’t need anything from the government. But if there is any tax incentives, and they will not be asking for it, that would be appreciated,” he continued.
He said the AUVIV bus, which he said was specifically designed to take care of the local policies, was expected to be a 21st century leading brand like Ford in the 19th century and the Toyota in 20th century.
Prof. Chirwa said the vehicle parts that will be manufactured in Zambia will be supplied across the globe.
“Manufacturing today is simpler as everything is done by specialist industries. Every single manufacturing company today is an assembly plant. It’s much simpler today to have an assembly plant. AUVIV is coming to Zambia today as a diesel and petrol engine simply because there is no infrastructure for charging points. If we had them, we would have brought electrical vehicles, so they are taking the electrical vehicle to Europe,” Prof Chirwa said.
The launch of the vehicle took place at the Government Complex in Lusaka and was attended by Works and Supply Minister Slyvia Chalikosa, Lusaka Mayor Miles Sampa, other government and related industry officials.
Prof. Chirwa has designed and manufactured a high roof monocoque bus according to the Provisions of Statutory Instrument (SI) No 79 of 2016. This is the first-ever AUVIV bus to be manufactured according to the Zambian laws.
Prof. Chirwa further stated that AUVIV will be producing environmentally cleaner, safer, more comfortable and yet more affordable commercial vehicles like minibuses, panel vans including ambulances and refrigerated vans.
And Kapiri Member of Parliament Stanley Kakubo described the development as good news.
“The good news today is that Kapiri Mposhi will be home to our country’s motor vehicle assembly plant,” he said.
“I have to say that the AUVIV could not have come at a better time for us in Kapiri Mposhi. The plant will bring opportunities for our people, especially our youths. We are looking forward to skills training via the jobs that will come, the value chain for supplies of consumables, we also see an opportunity for small businesses opening to make bolts and nuts and other parts that will be needed,” Mr. Kakubo said.
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