The Japanese company Nissan, one of the top sellers in the Egyptian market, will participate in the third annual Egypt Automotive Summit to discuss the challenges currently facing the Egyptian market and what automotive companies will need from the government.
Daily New Egypt interviewed Isao Sekiguchi, the managing director of Nissan Egypt, to understand what role Nissan will play in the automotive summit and what Sekiguchi views as the biggest problems within the sector.
What topics should be discussed during the Egypt Automotive Summit?
Nissan looks forward to conversations on the Egyptian government’s future support plans for automotive factories, for both original equipment manufacturers (OEM) and the feeding industry.
We also look forward to discussing the implementation of the new automotive industry strategy, in addition to the role of local feeding industry suppliers in achieving the strategy’s targets.
What is your opinion on the role of the summit?
The third annual Egypt Automotive Summit has become one of the largest events able to gather all of the automotive related parties.
The automotive summit presents an opportunity to create a common understanding between OEMs, importers, feeding industries, and the government.
What are your main demands of the government?
The government must guarantee a clear implementation of the automotive industry strategy as well as clear government support for automotive OEMs.
What are the key challenges the automotive industry is currently facing?
The absence of a clear vision and strategy for the automotive industry in Egypt is the most pressing challenge.
There are also the challenges of the devaluation of the Egyptian pound and the low demand on vehicles in the short term due to the price hikes.
What is your opinion on the investment opportunities in the Suez Canal Area Development Project and in what ways can the feeding industry grow?
The Suez Canal can provide the base for the evolution of the feeding industry through providing partnerships between global and local feeding industries companies.
What do you think of the taxes and customs system and how it affects the automotive sector and feeding industries?
The government must work on stabilising the customs exchange rate, which is an essential factor for market stability, in order to reduce the affect of the pound’s flotation.
What are your opinions and suggestions regarding Egypt’s monetary policy?
The policy that is being followed currently will lead to economic development in the near future.
How do you see the Central Bank of Egypt’s decision to float the pound?
It was necessary and it will have positive impacts in the long run.
How does the flotation affect the automotive industry in terms of cost and investment?
The devaluation of the pound was a good decision that came at the right time. This decision solved the problems with deferral payments due to the lack of foreign currency.
On the other hand, the decision has resulted in financial losses for OEMs, and it will also contribute to increasing the cost in the future.