President Cyril Ramaphosa to tour Toyota plant in Durban for launch of new hybrid car
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Pretoria - President Cyril Ramaphosa will visit the Toyota South Africa production plant in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal, to officiate at the launch of the Toyota Cross hybrid vehicle on Tuesday.
The launch of the Cross hybrid vehicle flows from Toyota’s commitment at the 2019 South Africa Investment Conference, according to acting spokesperson for the Presidency Tyrone Seale.
“This commitment now sees Toyota producing its first generation of hybrid electric vehicles on a South African assembly line. The vehicles will also be manufactured for export to 40 countries on the African continent,” said Seale.
He said government’s South Africa Automotive Masterplan (SAAM) and the automotive production and development programme had catalysed, and enabled continued investment in local vehicle and components production.
“Guided by its Vision 2035, the South African Automotive Masterplan encompasses a globally competitive and transformed industry that actively contributes to the sustainable development of South Africa’s productive economy and creates prosperity for industry stakeholders and the broader society,” said Seale.
The automotive sector has remained one of South Africa’s most investment-intensive industrial sectors, with seven light-vehicle producers investing a record R9.2 billion in 2020 while the component sector attracted R2.4 billion during the same period.
Ramaphosa will tour the Toyota plant in Durban, and officiate the launch of the Toyota Cross.
Seale said the president will be accompanied by Minister Ebrahim Patel of Trade, Industry and Competition, KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sihle Zikalala and Mayor of eThekwini Mxolisi Kaunda.
Meanwhile, the R15.8 billion project to upgrade the Pretoria-based Ford vehicle manufacturing plant is on track, and it is anticipated to be completed by September next year.
So said Gauteng MEC for Economic Development, Parks Tau, when he accompanied the Deputy Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition, Fikile Majola, to evaluate the construction work at the site earlier this month.
Known as the Tshwane Automotive Special Economic Zone, the project was launched by Ramaphosa in 2019, with a R15.8bn investment injected into South Africa by the Ford Motor Company and a further R4.3bn investment from automotive components suppliers located at the project.