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NEWS UPDATES 21 June 2009

Indonesia car sales may decline 25% this year

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New car sales in Indonesia are predicted to drop between 25 and 30 percent in 2009 from 600,000 units recorded last year, state news agency quoted an industry spokesman as saying.

Freddy Sutrisno, secretary general of the Association of Indonesian Auto Industries (Gaikindo), said here Friday the sales would drop because of weakening public and corporate demand as a result of the global financial crisis.

"New car sales in 2009 will be worse than in 2008," he said.

He said new car sales used to increase for the past few years. In 2005 they reached 534,000 units but dropped to 318,000 in 2006 before rising again to 430,000 in 2007. The biggest sales were recorded in 2008, reaching 600,000. Gaikindo targets 450,000 units in new car sales this year, he said.

"Although it is quite hard to achieve because of our financial crisis we hope this year`s sales will be able to reach 450,000 units. It will be quite good if the figures are met," he said.

He said in 2008 new car sales in Indonesia reached above 50,000 units in the first semester but because of the crisis sales in the period this year had only reached around 30,000 units.

Slowly though new car sales kept increasing from month to month from 34,000 units in April to 35,000 in May and hopefully 36,000 to 37,000 in June, he said. "If sales are increasing it means our economy is improving," he said.

Freddy said around 70 percent of new cars sold in the country were produced at home while the rest imported.

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