Home > Business > Nano will certainly be brought to Africa: Tata Africa head

Nano will certainly be brought to Africa: Tata Africa head

January 7, 2010

India’s ‘people’s car’ will certainly drive down the roads of Africa, with the Tata group conducting research on the rules and regulations of the different markets in this vast continent.

“(Tata) Nano is definitely the future in Africa,” Raman Dhawan, managing director of Tata Africa Holdings Ltd, told IANS in an interview here.

Tata Africa Holding is the main promoter company for the Indian conglomerate Tata Group’s businesses in Africa, where it has a presence in 10 countries.

The world’s cheapest car, Tata Nano, with a factory price of $2500, was rolled out commercially in July 2008 in India and hailed as a great engineering marvel. It will also be exhibited at the Smithsonian’s National Design Museum in Washington DC as an example of excellence in contemporary design.

There had been a lot of interest in Tata Nano from several parts of the world, but especially from Africa, due to its ultra-low price as well as fuel efficiency.

But, he indicated that the launch in African countries may not be any time soon. “We are still doing preliminary research and market survey,” Dhawan said.

He pointed out that all countries had different rules and regulations which would have to be met before introducing Tata Nano. “For example, some countries have minimum speed limits,” he said.

Once Tata Nano is wheeled out in Africa, it will be yet another milestone for Dhawan, who had first started Tata’s operations over three decades ago in Zambia. “I had come here as a young man in 1978, to set up base in Zambia for vehicles, as we were not allowed to trade with South Africa then”.

Since then, Tata’s name has almost become synonymous for commercial vehicles in the continent. “Tata vehicles were the forebearers which created the image for India here in Africa,” he said.

The current visit of Dhawan, who is based in Johannesburg, was timed to coincide with the Indian Vice President Mohammed Hamid Ansari’s visit to Zambia, the first ever by an Indian leader in twenty years.

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