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Ashok Leyland plans 2 plants in Africa, expand UAE facility

Wednesday, Feb 3, 2016,14:03 IST By Metrovaartha A A A

Greater Noida | Hinduja flagship firm Ashok Leyland plans to set up two assembly plants in Africa besides doubling capacity at Ras al-Khaimah facility in the UAE this year as part of its global expansion.

The company, which will unveil a school bus and a commercial vehicle later today at the Auto Expo here, will invest around Rs 100 crore in these overseas commercial vehicles assembly plants. We are looking at a couple of smaller assembly plants in Africa.

We haven’t identified the location yet. Besides, we are also looking to double the capacity of our Ras al-Khaimah facility, Ashok Leyland Managing Director Vinod K Dasari said here on the sidelines of the expo. On investments, he said as these are small facilities the company could invest around Rs 40-50 crore on each.

Elaborating on the UAE plan, he said: We were doing four units a day, which has been increased to 12. By the end of 2016, we will double it to 24 units a day, Dasari said. Commenting on market conditions, he said 2015 has been good for Ashok Leyland and hope the momentum would continue into 2016.

The company posted 36 per cent growth in total sales at 1,10,349 units in the April-January period of the fiscal as against 81,386 units in the year-ago period. He, however, said the light commercial vehicles segment continues to be a concern as the recovery has taken longer in the segment.

Usually the LCV segment recovers about six months later (than the rest of the segments), Dasari said. When asked about issues with partner Nissan, he said it is all part of what happens in any joint venture, yes there are issues without commenting on the details.

He also declined to comment on the future of the partnership but stated it continues as of today with products like LCV Dost doing well, although the MPV Stile and Evalia have been discontinued.

The company’s showcase at the expo will include the roll-over compliant school bus, Euro-VI compliant truck among others.

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