Stellantis, a global automotive manufacturing giant, is set to strengthen its position in Africa with the announcement of a landmark manufacturing facility in Coega, South Africa. This strategic move follows a Memorandum of Understanding signed with the South African Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) and the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (DTIC). The initiative is a key component of Stellantis’ “Dare Forward 2030” strategic plan and represents a significant step towards consolidating the company’s leadership position in the Middle East and Africa region.
Location and Capacity Plans
The chosen location for the state-of-the-art automotive plant is the Coega Special Economic Zone near Gqeberha in the Eastern Cape province of South Africa. Stellantis has set an ambitious timeline, aiming to complete the plant by the end of 2025, with the first vehicle—an anticipated 1-ton pick-up truck—expected to roll off the production line in early 2026.
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With an initial production capacity targeting 50,000 completely knocked down (CKD) units annually, the plant’s infrastructure is designed to accommodate up to 90,000 units annually. This move aligns with industry guidelines such as the Automotive Production Development Programme (APDP), underlining Stellantis’s commitment to exploring the export potential and contributing to the growth of the South African automotive sector.
Job Creation for Locals
The economic impact of this venture is expected to be substantial, particularly in the Coega region, which is poised to become a hub for the automotive industry in South Africa. Projections indicate an economy-wide impact of R664 million, with a positive ripple effect on household incomes and the creation of around 1,800 jobs in the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality and 2,097 jobs in the broader Eastern Cape Province.
Stellantis emphasizes its commitment to local communities through job creation and skill development. The project is set to generate approximately 1,000 direct jobs, with a localization target exceeding 30%. To ensure a globally competitive workforce, the company plans to invest over 500,000 hours in training and skill development.
A Great Investment Destination
Key stakeholders have expressed enthusiasm for this transformative project. Samir Cherfan, COO for Stellantis Middle East and Africa, stated, “This is an important step in our Dare Forward 2030 strategic plan towards strengthening our leadership in the Middle East and Africa region, and becoming a major player in South Africa.”
Ebrahim Patel, Minister of Trade, Industry, and Competition in South Africa, highlighted the country’s attractiveness as an investment destination, saying, “South Africa is a great investment destination with significant car-making capacity. We look forward to working closely with Stellantis to enable the company to set up a plant that will expand our manufacturing base and create local jobs.”
Khwezi Tiya, CEO of the CDC, welcomed the economic boost for the Eastern Cape Province, stating, “This is a much-needed and welcomed economic boost for the Eastern Cape Province with an anticipated economy-wide impact on the province’s GDP of R664 million.”
The progress Stellantis is making with the construction of this ground-breaking facility symbolizes not only a strategic business move but also a significant contribution to South Africa’s economic development. It will also give thousands of locals the opportunity to find new jobs through this new plant or new locksmith services. The project fits into the broader regional growth strategies and underlines South Africa’s potential to become a major player in the global automotive industry.