BMW South Africa’s exports to the US look set to reach 22 000 units this year as the company benefits from the duty-free provisions of the African Growth and Opportunity Act (Agoa).
BMW South Africa’s exports to the US look set to reach 22 000 units as the company benefits from Washington’s duty-free provisions of the African Growth and Opportunity Act (Agoa).
The Rosslyn-based company’s chief executive, Ian Robertson, said exports to the US would increase from 11 000 to 22 000 units this year. In addition, BMW’s R3,8-billion business would account for the bulk of the R4,5-billion total South Africa exports expected to be shipped to the US under Agoa this year.
“The 22 000 units compare with our expected total output in South Africa of 55 500 units,” Robertson said. Output would remain the same in 2003, he added.
Although US legislators “intended ordinary Africans to benefit from Agoa, the German firm is by far the biggest local beneficiary to date,” reported on Friday.
Agoa offers exporters from African countries tariff-free access to the US market for thousands of products.
BMW is planning to ship 325i and 330i models to the US.
“Unquestionably, we are one the successful companies in terms of Agoa,” Robertson said. “However, it’s a question of time before a lot more people get on board.”
“We would not be able to use Agoa if we didn’t already have a competitive product. We compare in terms of quality with plants in Europe, and we now get tax savings from Agoa.”
He said the tax benefits under Agoa amounted to about R6 000 a car. “Overall, it’s a benefit to the BMW group, and it is a very strong anchor for their investment in SA,” Robertson said.