Task team formed to help motor industry

Kea' Modimoeng

Kea' Modimoeng

A task team to tackle the woes of the local car industry was set up on Tuesday night following a meeting between the Department of Trade and Industry and representatives from the industry.

Trade and Industry Minister Mandisi Mpahlwa met the heads of the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa and the National Association of Automotive Component and Allied Manufacturers (Naacam).

The task team was established to finalise specific proposals with regard to possible support measures for the industry in light of the current economic crisis.

Roger Pitot, Naacam's executive director, who is also part of the task team, said the group was expected to come up with recommendations by March 6 and report directly to the minister.

He said: "We are grateful that the minister understood the urgency of this matter and it is up to us to make it work."

Pitot estimated that the two organisations needed more than R10billion, which he said should not be seen as a "bailout" but as a "simple loan funding" agreement.

About 22500 jobs are on the line in the automotive and component manufacturing sector.