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NEWS UPDATES 9 October 2009

Philippines car sales may remain flat in 2009 

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Vehicle sales in the Philippines were slower during the first three quarters of the year compared with a year ago but month-on-month sales in September inched up, the Manila Times reported, quoting auto manufacturers.

The latest joint report of the Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines Inc. (Campi) and the Truck Manufacturers Association (TMA) shows that a total of 93,385 units were sold in end-September this year, down 0.8 percent compared with 94,133 units sold in the same period in 2008.

Sales during the month of September reached 11,204 units, up 6.9 percent compared with 10,575 in August.

“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, Campi president, said in a statement.

She said the industry has to sell an average of 10,540 units monthly in the three remaining months of this year to hit the sales target of 125,000 units by end-2009.

Campi said year-to-date sales of passenger cars were down 1.7 percent year-on-year, but September sales were up 6.9 percent month-on-month. “[Further] sales increase [of passenger cars] is expected for the last quarter of the year,” the chamber said.

Toyota Motor Philippines Corp. remains the top seller in the first nine months of this year as it sold 32,007 units. But year-to-date sales were down 6.2 percent compared with 2008. Toyota’s 34.3-percent market share in the nine-month period was down 1.9 percent from a year ago.

Sales of Mitsubishi Motors Philippines Corp. were the second-highest in the nine-month period with 16,632 units, up 29.9 percent year-on-year, while the company’s market share of 17.8 percent in the same period expanded by 4.2 percent from a year ago.

This was followed by Honda Cars Philippines Inc. as its vehicle sales reached 13,094 units in September, up 17.9 percent year-on-year, while its 14-percent market share also grew by 2.2-percent from a year ago.

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



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