Iranian Automakers Making Foreign Inroads

Iranian Automakers  Making Foreign InroadsIranian Automakers  Making Foreign Inroads

Iran's leading automakers SAIPA and Iran Khodro Diesel Company (IKD) recently launched initiatives in Ivory Coast and Azerbaijan Republic respectively.

Ivory Coast received representatives from Iran's second largest car manufacturer SAIPA in the previous week, according an Iranian report.

The visit was planned for the Iranian delegation to discuss issues with Ivorian officials, businessmen and economic activists, IRNA reported on July 8.

In a visit to the country's largest city and economic capital, Abidjan, SAIPA's exports and international affairs deputy, Mohsen Dastkhosh-Javan, met with the country's Minister of Transport Gaoussou Toure on Monday.

During his visit, the Iranian official said SAIPA is ready to enter the country's market and replace its old public transportation fleet with newer vehicles.

SAIPA is currently exporting vehicles to more than 20 countries and has set up production lines in five others, including in Africa.  

"The company [SAIPA] is prepared to set up an official representation in Ivory Coast," he said.

Toure noted that the government plans to replace 25,000 dilapidated taxis with new ones and SAIPA's range of low-cost vehicles could be a valuable proposition.

Iranian carmakers, particularly SAIPA, have increased their market share in the region and further afield, now that sanctions on the automotive industry have been repealed.

SAIPA's range of vehicles like the Tiba and Pride models are ideal for developing economies with low purchasing power.

IKD's Initiative   

Truck maker Iran Khodro Diesel Company seeks to launch a factory in Azerbaijan, deputy minister of industries, Mohsen Salehinia, said at a press conference in Tehran.

Following negotiations between the two countries, Azerbaijan has been offered a business plan by IKD.

According to Salehinia, Azerbaijan is currently considering the proposal, AzerNews reported.

Iran Khodro Diesel Company is a leading manufacturer of commercial vehicles, including trucks, buses, minibuses and vans, in the Iranian market and in Middle East, CIS and African markets.

The company, established in 1966, has about 70% of the local industrial vehicle market share.

IKD's annual production is over 20,000 units of heavy and semi-heavy vehicles such as trucks, buses and vans.

Azerbaijan has a number of car manufacturing plants spread over several regions.

Ganja Automobile Plant, founded in 1986, specializes in assembling the Russian “Oka” and “UAZ” cars, Belarusian “MAZ” trucks and “Belarus” tractors, as well as Chinese “Changan” vans and trucks. In 2008, the plant produced about 600 cars and tractors.

Another big and the most modern plant of Azerbaijan is Nakhchivan Automobile Plant, founded in 2006, that became operational in 2010. The plant, spread over 2.6 hectares, produces 5,000 Lifan cars a year.

AzSamand, a factory founded in 2005 in Azerbaijan's Shamakhi, assembles a limited run of Iran Khodro's Samand and Runna vehicles.