Business

Firm unveils N3.5bn automobile factory in Abuja

•NEXIM Bank, Bank of Industry pledge N5bn

 

In a bid to embrace the energy transition taking place in other parts of the world, an indigenous firm, Zeetin Engineering, has unveiled a multi-billion naira automobile factory in the Idu Industrial Area of Abuja,

 

The firm, Sunday Telegraph learnt, was founded on the anticipation that the western world has seriously began to phase out petrol and diesel engines and shifting to other renewable sources of energy for vehicles.

 

The company, when fully operational, will be engaged in the manufacture of electric cars, trucks, bulldozers as well as other offroad heavy-duty vehicles and spare parts for the Nigerian market. Zeetin focuses on all types of metal works of high-end engineering and has acquired a wide range of sophisticated production machines relevant to the metal works and auto engineering industry in Nigeria.

 

Managing Director, Zeetin Engineering, Robert Azibaola, who took a select group of journalists on a tour of the facility, said that he had invested about N3.5 billion in the project and looked forward to mobilising more resources. Azibaola said the investment was a move to launch Nigeria into the league of automobile manufacturing countries.

 

He also described it as a bold step to developing and advancing technology in Nigeria and bringing her at par with the rest of the world. He disclosed that already, the Bank of Industry (BoI) and Nigeria Export-Import (NEXIM) Bank had expressed interests in supporting the project with an additional N5billion. The two banks, Azibaola explained, have agreed in principle to advance loan facilities of N2.5 billion each to the company.

 

“With its capacity, Zeetin will be functioning as an OEM (original equipment manufacturer) for Nigeria and will be churning out full-scale industrial product for the Automotive, Aeronautic, Aviation, Railways, Marine, Agricultural sectors, etc.

 

“The lack of OEMs in the country has been a great hindrance to the growth and development of manufacturing and assembling  companies. Manufacturers in Nigeria usually resort to importation of all their spares amidst scarce foreign exchange and lead time. When fully operational, most Nigerian businesses in need of specialised spareparts will get from Zeetin direct and would not be waiting for importation from abroad.

 

Thus, Zeetin Engineering shall be bridging a vital gap. “Importation of parts and spare parts should not happen again in Nigeria. We are here to carve and manufacture any spare parts needed in the country.

 

This is my personal contribution towards making Nigeria a great country,” he said. According to him, the factory would create no fewer than 600 direct jobs for talented young Nigerians as well as thousands of other indirect employment opportunities.

 

He condemned the practice whereby Nigerians and Nigerian firms have continued to import vehicles, spare parts and all types of machines that could have been manufactured in the country.

 

He said that Zeetin has an array of high calibre machines that are capable of reproducing themselves or deployed to manufacturing other machines, spares parts and equipment. Aziboala also disclosed that the company would be into full-scale Research and Development (R&D.) in its efforts to develop and produce automotive engines that are truly Nigerian.

 

It will, he said, subsequently commence the production of light vehicles, buses and heavy-duty equipment such as bulldozers, excavators, cranes and other off-road machines required for the infrastructural development of Nigeria

 

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