Ministry of Industries and Production has awarded Greenfield investment status to Al-Haj Automotive to assemble Proton cars in Pakistan under the Automotive Development Policy 2016-21.
Proton is already in process of setting up its assembly plant in Karachi. It will be Malaysian automaker’s first ever CKD plant in Southeast Asian region, that will sit on a 55 acre site with an initial investment within USD $30 million. The facility will reportedly be ready for production by June 2020 and would have an annual capacity of 25,000 units. The plant would also create 2,000 direct jobs and 20,000 indirect jobs through other areas such as local vendors.
The first product to be offered in Pakistan by Al-Haj Proton venture will be the 1.3 liter Saga sedan. The company will reportedly begin selling CBU version of Proton Saga by the second quarter of 2020.
According to Proton Chairman Syed Faisal Albar, Pakistan will become Proton’s gateway to penetrate other markets while the company is studying to introduce other models in our market as well.
In a time when auto industry is facing a slowdown and with Renault and Datsun already backed off with their plans, the advancement of Proton is indeed a commendable step and is a ray of hope for us to expect quality cars in Pakistan while generating competition in the sector.