Auto sector to see golden age

Cooperation with China propels Pakistan’s industry as more brands may set up plants

As for the automotive industry, Pakistan is about to see a golden age of development. Chinese brands including BAIC Motor, Changan Auto and SAIC Motor have set up their assembly plants in Pakistan, said Pakistan’s Honorary Investment Counsellor in China Philip Jian.

Other brands like GWM, BYD and Geely are also likely to open plants in Pakistan, he said in an interview with China Economic Net. Now, increasingly more Chinese brands, with positive prospects in Pakistan’s automotive industry, are cherishing the South Asian country as an important destination of their strategic plan. “Chery’s market of righthand drive cars covers seven countries. Especially in South Africa and Nepal etc, we have already been listed, but these are the markets for complete vehicles,”

Chery Automobile Pakistan Director Felix Hu told CEN. “Pakistan is the first market for CKD (completely knocked down) vehicles among them, and the vehicles will be assembled and produced locally.” Automobile manufacturing in Pakistan through Sino-Pak collaboration will improve local employment and tax revenue.

More importantly, “as we will manufacture our latest model here, therefore our technology and management skills will be integrated into the project in Pakistan, which will have an extremely positive impact on the improvement of the entire industry in Pakistan,” Felix said. “You will see there’re always advantages for JVs (joint ventures) because both sides save time and money.

We can in very short time start production and go forward. It’s great,” Sazgar Engineering Works Ltd Three-Wheeler Project Team Head Zubair Aamir said. In 2020, Pakistani government approved the Electric Vehicle Policy 2020-25, aiming to see electric vehicles capture 30% of all the passenger vehicle and heavy-duty truck sales by 2030 and 90% by 2040.

Benefitting from the support from the government, in recent years, the electric vehicle industry in Pakistan is growing strongly and the cooperation between Chinese and Pakistan enterprises is springing up like mushrooms. “China has developed standards for electric vehicles including electric storage, batteries, etc. China has done it because it is much ahead of any other nation in the world about standardising electing vehicles and its products.

So I would like to get these things from China,” Aamir said. It is learnt that the whole EV industry revolves around the battery system, which is mainly dominated by China, Japan and South Korea worldwide. Aamir also showed an electric three-wheeler, the integration of Chinese and Pakistani wisdom, to CEN. “Its motor, battery and electronic control system are all imported from China, sharing the same production line with Tesla.

The steel frame steering system of the whole vehicle is also from China. All the seats on the car are made of Pakistani calfskin, therefore, are comfortable and soft,” he said. “In recent years, Chinese automobile brands have become very mature in technology, especially when it comes to the entry-level models. We can confidently say that they already can compete with Japanese and Korean models.

“In fact, we encourage enterprises to invest in the whole industry chain in Pakistan, not just in CKD assembly plants. That is to say, through our technology, equipment exports and capacity transfer, Pakistan’s basic industrial supporting capacity can be rapidly stimulated. We believe we have the ability to make it,” Philip Jian concluded.