LAHORE - Atlas Honda Limited, a joint venture of Atlas Group and Honda Motor Company, has announced an investment plan of $100 million for the expansion of its motorcycle operations in Pakistan.

In its meeting held on Friday, the Board of Directors of the company approved a three year expansion plan to double the installed capacity of its Sheikhupura factory, near Lahore, from the existing 0.6 million to over 1.2 million units per annum. In this regard, an investment of around $ 50 million will be made directly by Atlas Honda, whereas $30 million will be invested by Atlas Honda’s associated companies and a further $20 million by the company’s parts suppliers to expand their own respective facilities.

The first motorcycle is expected to roll off the new line by the beginning of October 2016. The expansion will lead to the generation of 1,800 direct jobs and a further 5,000 jobs at its associate companies and part manufacturing partners.

Atlas Honda Limited, established in 1963, currently has two production plants - one in Karachi and the second near Lahore. The company is the largest manufacturing and marketing company for the sale of motorcycles in Pakistan. After the expansion, the combined assembly capacity of the company will rise to above 1.3 million units a year.

At the announcement of the new investment, Saquib H. Shirazi, CEO of Atlas Honda said, “Given an improved outlook for the economy, the Company foresees the demand of motorcycles to rise steadily. With a youthful population and fast changing customer sentiments, the company is excited about the growth opportunities and intends to further expand its model lineup. With a continued focus on quality, technology and localisation, the company aims to deliver even greater value.”

Talking with the media Razi-ur-Rahman, Head of Corporate Affairs, Atlas Honda, said that the company remains convinced that in order to be successful in the long term, it has to create value for its customers, shareholders and also the society at large. Thus, as part of the expansion, a team of Atlas Honda associates has been tasked to help improve not only the technical skills of its vendors and dealers but on improving management concepts and also focus on environment issues like the reduction in the carbon imprint at their premises,” he added.

“In order to further institutionalise this learning, Atlas Foundation is in the process of building a Technical Skills Institute near Atlas Honda’s Sheikhupura facility,” Razi said adding that this philosophy is very much in line with the company’s vision to share its knowledge and learning with the society.