Volkswagen is in its finals stages to expand its footprint on the African continent with a new manufacturing plant in combination with an integrated Volkswagen automotive mobility solution (car sharing). This is a first for the Volkswagen Group in Africa under the auspices of Volkswagen Group South Africa (VWSA).
Rwanda: necessary political stability for investment
Volkswagen has underlined the fact that they chose Rwanda for this new project because Rwanda does provide the necessary political stability as well as zero tolerance for corruption. Volkswagen does also attach great importance to the fact that Rwanda is a leader in innovation and technology, including information technology and has a young and tech savvy population. In addition, Rwanda is a dynamic economy which produces an annual growth rate of some 7 percent
Employment of up to 1000 people
Volkswagen will set up a vehicle assembly operation as well as a sales and service structure including a training center combined with the new mobility solution. The business plan assumes employment of between 500 and 1000 people in Kigali in phase one.
The production facility will have an initial annual capacity of up to 5000 units, with 2018 being the start-up year. The Volkswagen product portfolio shall include the Hatchback Polo, the Passat, a sedan and possibly the Teramont, a large SUV.
Ease transfer of technology and skills
In line with Volkswagen’s commitment to Rwanda and the training of local people, the company also intends to link-up with other German and Rwandan companies to establish a local technical academy to ease the transfer of technology and skills. VW will thus be a major contributor to foreign direct investment, technology transfer, job creation and skills development in Rwanda.