Romanian car market to fall by more than 55% this year

Publish date: 22-07-2009
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The Romanian car market could return to the 2003 level, to about 140,000 new vehicles sold, which would mean a drop of over 55%, as compared to last year, according to estimates of the Romanian Association of Automotive Manufacturers and Importers (APIA). "From the very start of 2009, APIA was advancing a very pessimistic forecast for this year: a return of the market to the volume of 2003, namely to around 140,000 vehicles sold. Unfortunately, the figures registered in mid - 2009 make this scenario more and more possible. We have just over 70,000 cars, with a total market of about 79,000 vehicles," reads an APIA release sent to the Mediafax agency on Tuesday.

The Association believes that the situation would have probably been "more serious" if it were not for the Car stock renewal running programme, under which over 11,500 cars were sold, equivalent to about 16% of the market. "The only hopes rely on the market reaction to the opening of the Car stock renewal running programme to the purchase of commercial vehicles (both by individuals, but especially by legal persons) and the acceptance of leasing as a financing source. Another hope is related to the re-launch of credit, but this depends on the banks", APIA says.

However, the Romanian auto producers and importers believe that the evolution of the market in the second half of the year will be similar to the six-month situation. "Even more problematic is that, unlike most countries in the EU, which registered increases in car sales in June, as against May, a drop continues to be registered in Romania (-4.6%). There is, however, good news, too: Dacia exports to EU countries increased significantly in the first half of the year (99.8% to EU15), it is true, also due to the car stock renewal programmes in these countries," reads the APIA release.

The total automotive market (cars, commercial vehicles and buses) fell by 61.6% in June, as compared to the same month last year, from 36,420 units to 13,966 vehicles. Compared to May, the whole automotive market registered a 7.7% decline. 15,123 units were sold in May.

In the first half of the year, the total market deliveries fell by 55.2% over the corresponding period of last year, from 176,385 vehicles to 79,060 units.

Earlier this year, APIA officials said that halving the auto market could lead to the cutting of about 100,000 jobs of the 220,000 existing in the industry, because the automotive sector is calibrated to operate with annual sales around the value of 300,000 units.

Curierul National

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