South Africa's automobile industry was a leader in the government's radical expansion of the manufacturing sector, President Thabo Mbeki said on Wednesday in stressing that it be encouraged and supported.
It was self-evident that the automobile sector would play a significant role in ensuring the country achieved the higher rates of economic growth it needed, Mbeki said at Daimler Chrysler's launch of the Mercedes-Benz W 204 C Class in East London.
He said the Motor Industry Development Programme (MIDP) review undertaken in 2005 was scheduled for completion in December.
The review aimed to, among others, evaluate the industry's performance in making vehicles more affordable, growing exports, rationalising production platforms and stabilising and growing employment.
"At the same time, the thrust of this review is to ensure that our automotive industry remains globally competitive and is integrated into the global value chain," Mbeki said in a speech prepared for delivery.
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