from PHYLLIS BIRORI in Kigali, Rwanda
KIGALI – VOLKSWAGEN has commenced the rollout of its integrated automotive mobility solutions with the registration of a first-of-its-kind entity in Rwanda.
The Volkswagen Mobility Solutions Rwanda will commence operations in the second quarter of 2018 with an initial investment of US$20 million and the creation of between 500 and 1 000 jobs in Kigali.
It will house a production facility with an installed capacity for 5 000 vehicles, as well as a retail outlet and a training centre. A local software company, Awesomity Lab, has been appointed to develop the App for the mobility services.
The Volkswagen product portfolio will initially include the Hatchback Polo, the Passat, a sedan and possibly the Teramont, a large special utility vehicle.
In December 2016, Volkswagen signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Rwanda Development Board (RDB) to conduct a detailed study to develop a business case for Volkswagen to introduce an integrated automotive mobility concept in Rwanda, which would be a first for Volkswagen worldwide.
“Our studies are complete, we believe that we have a business case that will work and we are now ready to commence with the implementation of our plans for Rwanda. In short after today there is no going back, we are now fully committed to implementing our unique integrated automotive mobility solution in Rwanda together with Rwandans,” said Thomas Schaefer, Chairman and Managing Director of Volkswagen Group South Africa (VWSA)
VWSA is responsible for the Sub Saharan African.
VWSA chose Rwanda for the feasibility of an integrated automotive mobility solution for its political stability and zero tolerance for corruption, dynamic economic growth, young and tech savvy population and Kigali;s commitment to spearhead the smart city agenda.
“We are confident that this partnership will help create countless opportunities for young Rwandans not only in terms of employment but also in terms of skills transfer”, said Clare Akamanzi, Chief Executive Officer of the RDB.
– APA / CAJ News