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Iran-owned car manufacturer reactivated in Senegal amid rising exports

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
An Iranian-owned car manufacturer resumes its operations in Senegal amid a boom in exports activity.

An Iranian car manufacturing plant in Senegal has resumed its operations amid plans by the Iranian government to increase exports from the country’s automotive sector to both boost jobs and facilitate its access to hard currency revenues.

A Sunday report by the official IRNA news agency said that car manufacturing plants in other countries owned by major Iranian automotive companies have been reactivated in recent months, including SenIran Auto, a plant located near the Senegalese capital of Dakar where the Iran Khodro Company (IKCO) has majority of shares.

IKCO’s head of exports and international relations said that SenIran Auto has resumed manufacturing the Samand model since earlier this week.

Kianoush Pourmojib said that the plant has been awarded a contract to produce 2,000 taxis in Senegal, adding that IKCO plans to introduce other models for production in the site to market them in other West African countries.

The announcement comes amid efforts by the Iranian government to expand exports of manufactured products from the country as part of plans to diversify the economy away from crude revenues.

Another overseas plant run by the IKCO in Syria has been reactivated following a trip to the country last month by Iran’s minister of industries Reza Fatemi Amin, said the report by IRNA.

It quoted Fatemi Amin as saying that two other sites in Iraq and Azerbaijan will resume or increase their manufacturing activity in the near future.

The minister said that Iran has set a target to export 30% of its car output by 2025, adding that the figure would equal to around one million cars per year.   

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