The President and Chief Executive Officer of Toyota Tsusho Corporation, Ichiro Kashitani, has assured the President Nana Akufo-Addo, to expect the first Toyota vehicle to be assembled in Ghana to be outdoored by August 2020.

Thanking the government of Ghana for its help and support towards the realization of this project, Mr. Ichiro Kashitani stated that “we consider the project of the assembly plant a marriage. It lasts for life, and it is a long-term project.”

Mr. Tsusho made this known on Thursday, August 29, 2019, when the Government of Ghana and Toyota Tsusho Corporation signed a Memorandum of Understanding for the establishment of a Toyota and Suzuki Assembly Plant in Ghana.

The Chief Operations Officer of the company in charge of the Africa division of Toyota Tsusho, Mr. Imai Toshimitsu, who was also at the meeting noted that the decision to set up in Ghana has been necessitated by the favourable economic climate prevailing in the country.

He said “We are willing to participate in the automotive industry in Ghana”.
He added, “We are planning to kick-off the project immediately, and, hopefully, we will have first car made in Ghana around this time (August)next year.”

Mr. Imai Toshimitsu stated that details of the work to be undertaken in Ghana, including the volumes and models of the vehicles to be produced, are contained in the MoU.

“The products to be assembled in Ghana include the Toyota Hilux pickup, which is already popular in Ghana. He also announced of plans to introduce small passenger cars, with two Suzuki brands”.

The decision to assemble Suzuki vehicles in Ghana, according to Mr. Imai Toshimitsu, follows the acquisition on Wednesday, 28th August, 2019, of a 4.9% stake in Suzuki by Toyota Tsusho, thus making Toyota a “principal shareholder” in Suzuki.

On his part, President Akufo-Addo stated that the signing of the MoU with Toyota Tsusho falls in line with the vision of making Ghana an automotive hub for West Africa and the larger African market.

With the coming into force of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), the President noted that “Ghana is the base to reach this larger African market”.

He continued, “We are attaching a great deal of importance to the initiative and development. We want to assure you that, whatever it is we can do on the side of the Government to provide you with the necessary support and assurance that the investment you are going to make in our country will be worth your while, you can count on us to do that.”

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