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NEWS UPDATES 21 January 2010

Malaysia expects stronger economy to ramp up car sales

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The Malaysian Automotive Association expects the automotive total industry volume to grow 2.4 percent to 550,000 units this year on improved global economic outlook and rising consumer sentiment, the StarBiz reported.

President Datuk Aishah Ahmad said the multiplier effects from the Government's stimulus packages would boost the economy and create demand for new vehicles.

Meanwhile, TIV for 2009 declined 2 percent to 536,905 from 548,115 units in 2008 due to the impact from the global economic downturn.

It exceeded the association's forecast of 500,000 vehicles as sales perked in the last quarter of the year, buoyed by government stimulus measures which boosted consumer spending, improved business confidence, said Aishah Ahmad.

There were also aggressive sales campaigns.

The stronger performance in the fourth quarter, underpinned by Malaysia's economic recovery, is expected to extend into 2010, with auto sales seen rising 2.4 percent to 550,000 vehicles, Aishah said. It could beat the record high of 552,614 units sold in 2005, she said.

Aishah said Malaysia's 2 percent drop in auto sales last year was small compared to a 28 percent decline in Singapore, 20 percent in Indonesia and 16 percent in Brunei.

Thailand registered an 11 percent decline but remained the largest auto market in Southeast Asia with total sales of 548,871 units, mostly commercial vehicles, she said. Only Vietnam and Philippines posted higher auto sales.


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