Auto assemblers of Pakistan had taken steps to hide their incompetence in the shade of ‘auto imports are hurting the local auto industry’, and recently, we uncovered how Indus Motors’ incompetence led to their factories closure while today, the case of Suzuki Alto has come to light and it is also another case of local auto assembler’s incompetence, and complete lack of regard to government’s policies.
Pak Suzuki used to import Alto’s parts from Japan, but India has been growing fast and has localized a lot of vehicles which it now builds independently without any reliance over foriegn products.
Since Indian market is massive, Suzuki Japan has decided that any country which assembles Alto will now have to source parts from India instead of Japan as it has winded up producing Alto’s parts in Japan.
Even though, the freight costs could be reduced largely and impact the price of Alto positively for the consumers, there is one single but a big problem.
Owing to current legal restrictions on trade between India and Pakistan, Pak Suzuki was forced to discontinue Alto, and Pak Suzuki considered to start assembling Wagon R instead but we believe that it didn’t work out well as Pak Suzuki has now decided to leave the opposition to trade liberalization with India and pursue the government for free trade with our neighbors which previously, all local assemblers were against but now, Pak Suzuki has decided to reconsider its opposition to free trade as under the current legal framework, Pak Suzuki cannot import parts for Alto from India.
However, if the trade liberalization process goes according to schedule between Pakistan and India than Pak Suzuki might be able to import parts by the end of the year, assuming Islamabad goes ahead with liberalization as scheduled.
Suzuki Alto, which has been the best selling 1,000 cc in Pakistan till June 2012, whose production had to be closed down as parts became unavailable from Japan and all of it happened during automakers worst fears, when the auto imports were rising.
Although none of the auto assemblers in Pakistan paid any attention to or followed the ‘Deletion Policy’ which had outlined that gradually, auto assemblers had to end their reliance on imports and made the country entirely self-sufficient to be able to build the cars on its own.
But that didn’t happen as auto assemblers didn’t localize the car parts and Pakistan still have to import most of them despite agreeing to the deletion policy.
It is embarrassing to see that Pakistan isn’t even able to build Suzuki Mehran on its own entirely.