Volkswagen opens new assembly plant in Kenya
Dec 26, 2016: Volkswagen opened a new assembly plant in Kenya and launched plans for a ride-sharing service in Rwanda as it seeks to take advantage of surging car demand in Africa.
The German car manufacturer’s move into East Africa comes just weeks after it signed a deal to build an assembly plant in Algeria.
“Overall car sales in Africa are bound to rise by 40 percent within the next five years, that is why we are expanding our business,” said Volkswagen Brand CEO Herbert Diess.
The inauguration of the assembly plant in Kenya marks its return to the regional hub after an absence of some four decades.
The plant in the industrial town of Thika is expected to produce cars for Kenya as well as the wider East African market, starting with the Polo Vivo, described as the company’s most successful passenger car model in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta said the investment by Volkswagen was in line with government policy to industrialize his country’s economy.
“With the opening of this facility, I expect to see a lot of VW government vehicles. I hope the county governments will also buy Volkswagen cars,” Kenyatta said.