ashok leyland buses export order tata motors best stus tanzania africa african oau india exim bank support domestic sales dampener
Commercial vehicle (CV) maker Ashok Leyland said on Thursday that it has won a $170 million order from Tanzanian government to deliver vehicles, gensets, spares and equipment. CV makers are also poised for good business in India, with public transport corporations buying about 10,000 buses from the three CV makers, Ashok Leyland, Tata Motors and VE Commercial Vehicles. A woman rides a scooter past a passenger bus on a street in Mumbai February 5, 2014 (representational image).Reuters file

Chennai-based commercial vehicle maker Ashok Leyland said on Thirsday that it has won an order worth $170 million from the Tanzanian government to supply vehicles and related items. The company informed about the order minutes before trading hours; the share price of Ashok Leyland closed 1.72 percent higher at Rs 85.65 on the BSE.

The order will be financed by the EXIM Bank of India under National Export Insurance Account (NEIA) Scheme, the company said in the regulatory filing to the BSE. 

The company, belonging to the Hinduja Group, said export orders will enable it to make up for falling volume sales in the domestic market. "Exports to key international markets is an essential part of Ashok Leyland's strategic intent to globalise its product portfolio and derisk itself from supplying only into India," Vinod K Dasari, managing director at Ashok Leyland Limited, said.

The company had won a similar order worth $200 million from West African country Cote D'Ivoire, formerly known as Ivory Coast, in November last year.

Three days ago, Ashok Leyland launched the first Made-in-India electric bus. The buses will be priced in the range of Rs 1.5 to Rs 3.5 crore.

Volume sales at Ashok Leyland declined for the third straight month in September this year, indicating sluggish demand in the overall commercial vehicle segment.

The company sold 12,057 units last month, a fall of 18 percent from 14,783 commercial vehicles it sold last September. The fall was steep in the medium and heavy commercial vehicle segment at 26 percent (8,963 units) and was partly offset by light commercial vehicle (LCV) segment that grew 17 percent.

On the positive side, the company, along with Tata Motors and VE Commercial Vehicles, has benefited from new orders for buses placed by state transport undertakings. In September, the Mint reported that the three companies bagged orders for supplying 10,600 buses in the preceding three months. The orders are to be executed by the end of the current financial year.