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Uganda to manufacture solar-powered bus by 2018

25 January 2016, 16:23 Biko Rading

Kampala - Kiira Motors Corporation, the company that government of Uganda created to start motor vehicle manufacturing in the pearl of Africa nation has announced plans to begin automobile production in 2018.

Speaking through an email interview from the Corporation offices in Ntinda, a city suburb outside Kampala, Paul Musasizi the chief executive officer, said so far the two concept vehicles that have been produced - the Kiira EV and Kiira Smack should serve as a demonstration to Ugandans that the country is the real deal for automotive engineering and technology innovation.

“There is a difference between manufacturing and developing concepts. We have developed three concept vehicles and we are working on the manufacturing plant in Jinja,” he said.

He explained that concept vehicles mainly rely on environmentally friendly technology that minds about the environmental needs of future generations.

“Climate change is real and requires us to think about the future,” he said, as he inspected the final touches on the 35-seater bus named Kayoola. The bus will be powered by solar energy.

“The same people who promised that they will deliver a two-seater sedan, promised that they will deliver an SUV. We promised a solar powered bus which we are delivering next month,” he said.

He added that they will use internationally trending materials and technology to ensure that the vehicles they produce adhere to acceptable safety standards.

According to Musasizi, the Kiira Motors Corporation began with startup capital of $70m (KES 242.7b). Currently they require another $48m (KES 166.4b) for work on innovation and training of the personnel to work on the project before they can start production in 2018.

“When we finally start off the project, we shall need $90m (KES 312billion) for buying materials and running the core business. We shall also ensure that the market is available for the vehicles,” he said.

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