Bangladesh is set to become an automaker by the next two years, as a South Korean investment company yesterday announced a plan to invest $2 billion for setting up a Korean brand car manufacturing plant in the country.
The proposed car unit is expected to go into production in 2012, targeting to make 50,000 Korean Tagaz brand cars a year, and sell those in both local and international markets.
The plant will also manufacture cars to be branded locally.
If the plant is set up in time, it will be the first-ever car making venture in Bangladesh.
Industries Minister Dilip Barua formally unveiled the $2 billion investment plan, and termed it as a good sign for Bangladesh amid a sluggish foreign investment flow.
Cimillae Development Co Ltd, the local agent of Korean investment company CCGI, will coordinate the investment implementation.
Abdul Mannan, managing director of Cimillae Development, said local customers will get a Tagaz brand new car at only Tk 7 lakh. The company has already acquired land at Bhairab in Narsingdi for the plant.
Mannan said the plant will require two years to be set up. As many as 15,000 jobs will be created to run the car manufacturing plant.
CCGI Chairman Lee Young Choung said his company has already decided to invest more in Bangladesh besides the car manufacturing plant. He said CCGI has plans to invest in 30 sectors in future.
Presently Japanese reconditioned cars dominate the Bangladesh market. Around 20,000 used cars are imported each year, while the number is 2,000 for brand new cars.
Some brand new carmakers like Ford have already initiated move to enhance their presence in Bangladesh.
Japanese Toyota still leads the market in both used and brand new car segments.