Ethiopia To Manufacture Lada Cars For The African Market
Russia has wasted no time in developing its new BRICS relationship with Addis Ababa
Ethiopia will launch the production of Russian Lada cars on its territory for the African market, the countries Ambassador to Russia Cham Ugala Uriat has said. The move is significant as it illustrates why Ethiopia has joined BRICS – its low manufacturing cost base can assist keep production costs down while also providing access to the growing African market.
“We’ll see Russian Lada cars in neighboring countries in the near future, because Avtovaz have already signed a deal with one of the Ethiopian companies” Uriat said, adding that those cars will be produced in Ethiopia. Lada make a range of SUV suitable for the African market.
In particular, Russian cars may be supplied to Sudan and South Sudan, Kenya and Somalia, Uriat said, and expressed hope that the production will start in the near future.
Other Russian auto manufacturers “are showing interest now to go to Ethiopia to build assembling lines” as well, he noted. Two more companies are holding consultations with the Ethiopian side on that issue, the ambassador revealed.
Ethiopia is one of Africa’s fastest-growing economies, and also has a burgeoning middle class. It is a member of the South-East African COMESA and the pan-African AfCFTA trade agreements, while a renewal of its WTO membership is pending. Ethiopia’s membership of COMESA gives it free trade access to Burundi, Comoros, the DR Congo, Djibouti, Egypt, Eswatini, Kenya, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Rwanda, Seychelles, Somalia, Sudan, Tunisia, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe. COMESA in total includes about 640 million people and has a GDP of about USD918 billion.