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NEWS UPDATES 11 October 2009

Philippine car sales in 2009 expected to reach last year’s total  

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Philippine automotive industry inched closer to its goal of equaling its 2008 sales, as it is now just 0.8 percent below its performance last year, when it posted in September its second highest monthly sales in 2009 thus far at 11,304 units, reported Business Mirror.

The industry’s September 2009 sales exceeded by 3.4 percent the number of vehicles sold in the same month last year, and 6.9 percent higher than the August 2009 sales.

In July, when the industry posted its highest monthly sales for the year at 11,597 units, the auto makers were still 2.4-percent off their 2008 performance.

“The industry continues to remain cautiously optimistic and is still looking at hitting the target of at least a flat growth for this challenging year,” Elizabeth Lee, president of the Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines Inc. (Campi), said.

Total vehicle sale for the first three quarters of the year reached 93,385 units, and the industry now needs to sell an average of 10,540 units per month to reach the target sales of 125,000 units.

Sales of commercial vehicles (vans, trucks, pickups, SUVs, AUVs, buses) totaled 60,258 units for the January-to-September period, just 0.3 percent lower than the same period last year. Passenger car sales, meanwhile, reached 33,127 units, declining by 1.7 percent from last year.

“Currently, the industry is busy coping with the massive volume of vehicles being brought into the dealerships for repair, with some having to resort to increasing manpower to keep up with the load and to hasten the repair of customers’ vehicles,” Lee said.

Campi members, she added, have so far extended assistance in the form of lower prices/discounts for parts, labor and service for affected vehicles, as well as extending work hours just to accommodate the deluge of vehicles being received.

The industry has also formally asked the government to have an express lane for imported replacement parts at the ports of entry, and also suspend temporarily the tariffs imposed on them so the cost savings can be given back to the motorists in the form of discounts.



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