Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Thailand : Auto exports grow by 26% in the first half of 2008

Mitsubishi Thailand's 1 million pick up export celebration

BANGKOK, July 29 - Car sales in both the export and domestic markets have grown in almost all categories except for pick-up trucks during the first six months of this year.

Surapong Paisithpatanapong, spokesman for the automotive group of the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI) said the domestic market for passenger cars has expanded in response to the 5 per cent cut in excise duty to encourage energy-efficient vehicles.

Sales of passenger cars using the alternative E20 fuel, cheaper by six baht/litre compared to premium gasoline have accounted for over 34 per cent of all vehicles sold during the first half of this year – with over 110,000 units sold during the period.

The skyrocketing prices of diesel fuel resulted in a plunge in sales figures for the oil-guzzling one-tonne pickup trucks, with sold only 181,888 units during the first half of 2008.

However, this is offset by robust export performances in other categories as Thailand exported over 385,000 passenger cars and pick-up trucks in the first half of 2008 –a 26 per cent increase compared to the same period last year.

Motorcycles, sales of which have declined during the last two years, have showed signs of sales recovery.

Expensive farm commodities, together with pump-priming at the grassroots, resulted in nearly 880,000 units sold during the first half of this year, a four per cent increase year on year, according to FTI figures.

[Source : Thai News Agency, MCOT]


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