Progoti eyes big as Japanese car imports drop

http://www.daily-sun.com/?view=details&type=daily_sun_news&pub_no=202&cat_id=1&menu_id=3&news_type_id=1&index=0

Progoti eyes big as Japanese car imports drop
Gets more land for expansion
Asif Showkat

The government is going to allocate more land to Progoti Industries Ltd for expanding its car assembling capacity as the state-owned venture eyes to increase its share in the local car market fallowing a fall in Japanese vehicle import.

In this regard, “Industry ministry has decided to provide 4.31 acres of land of Bangladesh Can Company Limited to Progoti to set up new machinery for the expansion of its automobile assembling capacity”, a senior ministry official said.

He also said Progoti will cash in on the opportunities brought by the tragic earthquake and subsequent tsunami in Japan, which has slashed car import from the traditional automobile importing destination of Bangladesh.

Vehicle production in Japan has already dropped by 53.6 per cent while its domestic consumption has also plummeted following the massive disaster in March this year which lashed havoc on life the economic activities in the third largest economy of the world.

“State-owned Progoti Industries Ltd will start assembling Pajero Sports car of Mitsubishi Motors from June this year while production of 1,300cc Sedan cars will begin from June 2012,” Industries Minister Dilip Barua told daily sun yesterday. For this, the state-owned industry badly needs land and equipment, he added.

He also said Bangladesh should produce automobile parts locally to save the foreign currency being spent on imports. “Land would be provided to Progoti as per the government’s plan to expand its capacity,” he said.

The industries ministry recently has asked the Privatisation Commission to drop the name of Bangladesh Can Company from its privatisation list as some portion of its land was handed over to Chittagong Nuclear Energy Centre and another portion would be handed over to Progoti.

The commission has also sent the proposal to the Cabinet Committee o Economic Affairs for its approval. It also has decided to exclude Bangladesh Can Company from the list of companies to be privatised.

The government started a project to assemble Sedan car Lancer Ex and Pajero sports vehicle in Bangladesh under a joint venture with Progoti Industries Ltd and Japanese automaker Mitsubishi Motors.

The Japanese carmaker is currently assembling Pajero Jeep V6 for Bangladesh under a deal with Progoti.

Presently, Bangladesh’s annual demand for car is around 30,000 units, dominated mostly by reconditioned Japanese cars.

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