Written by Ella Copeland
Automobile manufacturer Maruti Suzuki is planning to boost exports of petrol-fuelled models to Africa, after a fall in sales in their home country of India.
As petrol prices soar, there has been a decrease in the sale of petroleum-fuelled models in India, resulting in the manufacturer aiming to export to the potentially lucrative petroleum markets in South East Asia and Africa.
Maruti’s Chief Financial Officer Ajay Seth told Bloomberg: “Markets such as Africa are seeing high growth and demand for our cars. Most of the markets we are looking to export to are mainly petrol markets.”
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Sales of petrol-fuelled engines have declined in India, where Maruti is currently utilising a disappointing 70 percent of its 880,000 petroleum-fuelled cars capacity. This decrease is following the relaxation of government control over petrol prices, which have seen a price increase of 41 percent, while diesel prices, which are still under government control, has only risen 8.4 percent.
The African market for cars powered by conventional fuels may be narrowing in South Africa soon, however, with the introduction of carbon tax for passenger vehicles this month.
The South African government plan to place a carbon tax on commercial and light vehicles as part of their carbon emission reductions for the Copenhagen Accord, where South Africa is committed to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions 34 percent by 2020.
In addition to the number of hybrid vehicles in South Africa, car manufacturers such as Ford South Africa are also assisting the research and development of more environmentally-friendly biofuels.
Researchers are working at the University of Stellenbosch to create a fuel which does not corrode or damage car engines. These biofuels are created from hydrocarbons and food oils, which emit fewer dangerous gases into the atmosphere.