India-headquartered Ashok Leyland, part of the Hinduja Group and the third largest commercial vehicle manufacturer worldwide, is eyeing the Egyptian automotive market through a joint venture with the state-owned El-Nasr Automotive Manufacturing Company (NASR), a press statement by the Ministry of Public Enterprise Sector said.

An official delegation from Ashok Leyland led by its President of International Operations Amandeep Singh met the Egyptian Minister of Public Enterprise Sector Mahmoud Esmat to discuss partnering with NASR to manufacture electric commercial vehicles in the country.

Other participants in the meeting included Mohamed El-Saadawy, Chairman of the Holding Company for Metallurgical Industries, Khaled Shedid, President of NASR and Wafa Tofelis, Managing Director for Mass Transport Vehicles Industry.

The statement said Egypt is focussing on localising the electric vehicle industry, including electric CVs and promoting their use in public and private mass transport.

It quoted the Minister as saying that Egypt has a local market capable of absorbing the production and regional trade agreements that support exports in line with the Indian company’s goal of establishing an integrated production centre for electric vehicles in Egypt for local and African markets.

Ashok Leyland’s chairman expressed interest in a JV with NASR, adding that Indian banks could be a source of financing for the project.

The statement said Egyptian officials also presented their plan for developing and rehabilitating NASR’s existing facilities. At the same time, the Ashok Leyland delegation undertook a plant visit to see the company’s existing production and service facilities.

Ashok Leyland is present in 50 countries through 10 factories, including an assembly facility in the UAE.

(Writing by Eman Hamed; Editing by Anoop Menon)