A parliamentary panel on Tuesday directed the Ministry of Industries and Production to break up “monopoly” of local car assemblers, end “own” money and submit their agreements along with reasons for not running plants at full capacity. This was the crux of a meeting of the parliamentary panel presided over by Senator Hidayatullah Khan.
Secretary Industries and Production, Khyzer Hayat Gondal said that there are issues relating to compliance of measures since implementation of new auto policy from July 1, 2016 but added that he personally is holding meetings to observe progress. He further stated that existing car assemblers have market monopoly as there is no other company or manufacturer and sometimes they abuse it.
Quality of locally manufactured cars is worse as compared to the past.
Senator Kalsoom Parveen said that on one hand quality of locally manufactured cars is worse as compared to the past and on other hand imports of used cars have been made difficult by increasing duty and decreasing age of cars. She said when consumers start relying on local assemblers they prioritize delivery to “profiteers” instead of to real consumers.
Senator Mian Ateeq Muhammad Shaikh said that local assemblers are involved in cartelization and making high profits through “own” money. His main attack was on Indus Motors, after Engineering Development Board (EDB) revealed to the committee in writing that M/s Honda had shared its standards with the Board whereas M/s Indus Motors and M/s Suzuki Motors did not.
“I had expressed my concerns with respect to the Indus Motors which manufacture Toyota brand. There is general perception that they are above the law because they don’t accept directions from any department. I understand most of their matters. The inability of EDB is another matter. They fix the price on their own and increase prices on their own. On the other hand, they charge “own” money from the consumers for early or immediate delivery,” he added.
Car assemblers are seeking five years to install immobilizers and airbags but they are technically strong and can do this overnight.
He requested the Standing Committee members to consider issues related to “delivery” time of the cars. CEO EDB informed the committee that M/s Toyota has immobilizers’ issue on XLI model whereas this system is available in other models of Toyota. He said that Toyota and Suzuki have obtained stay order from the Sindh High Court (SHC) against the immobilizers.
CEO EDB further stated “Car assemblers are seeking five years to install immobilizers and airbags but I have stated at public fora that they are technically strong and can do this overnight. The purpose to install immobilizers is to control theft.”