Syria opened its first car fair Monday, April 2, following the government decision to allow the private sector to import cars.
Some 30 carmakers were present for the opening of SyrAuto, representing companies from the giant US-German conglomerate Daimler-Chrysler to franchised producers such as Pars Khodro of Iran, and Tofas from Turkey.
Around 80 other companies linked to the auto industry — makers of tyres, oil and accessories, for instance — are represented at the fair, which runs until Friday at the international exhibition park in Damascus.
In July last year, the Syrian government ended its monopoly on importing cars — a measure in place for some 40 years to control foreign exchange activity.
The move to relax such controls was aimed at modernizing the Syrian car industry, regarded as being among the world's most antiquated. — (AFP, Damascus)
© Agence France Presse 2001
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)