West Africa Automotive Show opens on May 14 in Lagos

By Edu Abade

Approaches to building the local automotive components and parts manufacturing industry are topics that will be explored at this year’s West Africa Automotive Show Conference.

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The cornerstone and theme of the Conference is the status of the enabling environment and strategies to create it, especially within the ECOWAS and African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) frameworks.

Conference sessions will look at aspects such as supply chain extensions, local and regional manufacturing opportunities including reverse engineering and 3D printing, as well as the economics of automotive and parts manufacturing.

Now in its fourth edition, the West Africa Automotive Show (WAAS) Exhibition and Conference runs from May 14th to 16th at the Landmark Centre, Victoria Island in Lagos. Over 250 exhibitors from around the world are taking part with upwards of 4,500 professional visitors attending the trade event.

The Conference is chaired by Luqman Mamudu, former Director at the National Automotive Design and Development Council (NADDC) and Principal Partner/CEO at Transtech.

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Mamudu sees the Conference as a major opportunity for automotive business owners, including global OEMs (original equipment manufacturers), to find out more about the regional agenda of home governments as they align with the renewed ECOWAS and AfCFTA agendas on intra-Africa trade.

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He said: “A better understanding of the rules of origin protocols will enable stakeholders to reposition for the massive investment opportunities that are being or are about to be unleashed.

“The WAAS 2023 inaugural conference identified the content of Nigeria’s automotive components and parts sector within the structure of its emerging automotive development programme. The choice of Nigeria as a reference for the West Africa region was informed by the fact that Nigeria’s 15 million registered vehicles account for over 75 percent of the region’s vehicle population.

“Those who attended the 2023 conference were better informed about the overall automotive sector business opportunities but specifically the deep-rooted factors critical for repositioning by existing investors and investment decisions by new entrants.”

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“This year’s conference programme will highlight potential investment opportunities in components and parts manufacturing in the region. Discussions will include manufacturing collaboration among member countries and components manufacturers leveraged on comparative advantage, a win-win development model for everyone,” Mamudu said.

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“The presentations should also inform government decisions on critical fiscal policy intervention for the desired benefit of economic diversification, massive employment and an increase in GDP.”

The Conference runs on the first two days of WAAS and will be sponsored by Saglev, while Automedics Africa will run training sessions on vehicle repair and maintenance on the third day.

Alongside the Conference will be the WAAS Exhibition which is expanding into three exhibition halls. Among the highlights will be a huge representation from China with their pavilion, while the Automotive Component Manufacturers Association of India (ACMA) is hosting the Indian pavilion. Exhibitors will also be coming from the UAE, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, United Kingdom, Poland, Egypt, Pakistan, Germany, Italy, South Africa, Brazil and many other countries.

Joshua Okoria

Joshua Okoria is a Lagos based multi-skilled journalist covering the maritime industry. His ICT and graphic design skills makes him a resourceful person in any modern newsroom. He read mass communication at the Olabisi Onabanjo University and has sharpened his knowledge in media practice from several other short courses. 07030562600,

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