Automobile manufacturing company Stellantis has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with South African authorities to build a manufacturing facility.

The MoU was signed with the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) and the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (the dtic) of South Africa.

This will be the company’s first plant in the country.

The new facility is anticipated to manufacture vehicles for the domestic and export markets, reported Reuters.

The manufacturing plant will be established in a Special Economic Zone (SEZ), and its construction is anticipated to complete by 2025.

Stellantis Middle East and Africa COO Samir Cherfan said: “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.

“The manufacturing site in South Africa will be a new building block in our industrialization strategy that includes the plan to sell one million vehicles in the region by 2030 with 70% regional production autonomy and will bring us closer to our customer’s needs in the region.”

IDC CEO TP Nchocho said: “An investment partner such as Stellantis is an amazing opportunity for South Africa.

“Their track record in manufacturing plants around the world is impressive, and we look forward to a joint venture (JV) with Stellantis to build a successful plant in South Africa. Another brick in the foundation towards our target of producing a million cars locally in SA.”

Auto manufacturer Stellantis owns brands including Fiat, Peugeot, Citroën and Jeep.

It presently has nine facilities in the MEA region.