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President and Chief Executive Officer of Toyota South Africa, Andrew Kirby .Pic supplied

Top executives to spell out challenges facing SA motor industry

Industry leaders will shed light on mammoth challenges facing local motor industry at the crucial National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa [NAAMSA] in Kyalami,  Midrand north of Johannesburg.

NAAMSA is to hold this conference on August 31, organised by Messe Frankfurt South Africa in partnership with The Innovation Group.

The gathering will be one of the feature events at Grand Prix Circuit and International Conference Centre, 2018 Festival of Motoring.

It aims at discussing the major challenges facing local manufacturers on how to grow sales in the light of expected government-driven increased production targets.

President and Chief Executive Officer of Toyota South Africa, Andrew Kirby will deliver the keynote address.

Kirby’s presentation will cover the many challenges confronting not only local vehicle manufacturers but also participants in all other aspects of the automotive value chain, including importers, component suppliers and the retail dealerships.

Following his presentation, Kirby, who is the current NAAMSA president will also chair the session for the panel discussion.

Chairman and Managing Director of Volkswagen South Africa Thomas Schaefer will be an ideal presenter to lead the segment dealing with African and regional market development.

Schaefer’s specific topic is to outline the mandate of the African Association of Automotive Manufacturers [AAAM], of which he is the current chairperson.

Schaefer, who began his career in the automotive industry with Daimler commercial vehicles in Germany in 1991, has had a long and varied career in the production environment both local and in several other countries, including working at the Daimler plant in East London from 1998 to 2002.

He joined Volkswagen in 2012 with responsibility for group manufacturing overseas and took on his current position with Volkswagen in Uitenhage in 2015, being responsible for Sub-Saharan Africa and the local operation.

Schaefer will have the support of two experts in the regional market development at the conference in Dr. Alec Erwin, former Minister of Public Enterprises, and Dr. Martyn Davies, of Deloitte.

After leaving government Erwin has taken on several other tasks, including being a member of the Nigerian Presidential Investment Advisory Council and a Special Advisor to the United National Industrial Development Organisation.

This wide-ranging experience makes him well qualified to talk on the subject of “Africa in 2018 – the outlook and impact on the automotive sector.

A partner and Managing Director of Emerging Markets and Africa at Deloitte, Dr. Martyn Davies is another noteworthy campaigner, well-schooled in the needs and potential of Africa for the automotive industry.

He is currently working closely with the AAAM which will undertake another fact-finding visit to Nigeria shortly.

The NAAMSA Automotive Conference will start at 08:30 on Friday, August 31, and end at 13.20 with a lunch.

Participants can purchase Conference tickets online at iTickets at an early bird price of R1 695 per delegate – or at an added discount of R1 495 for group bookings of five or more people.

To purchase tickets go to iTickets:https://itickdets.co.za/register/new/400320.

To view the full conference programme and the list of speakers online:https://safestivalofmotoring.com/naamsa-conferenc-and-speakers.

For more information on the conference contact Neil Piper on neil.piper@za.messefrankfurt.com

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