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Vehicle importers’ sales down 18%

Vehicle importers saw an 18-percent drop in their unit sales this third quarter, according to the Association of Vehicle Importers and Distributors Inc. (Avid).

In a statement on Tuesday, Avid said that its member-companies sold 22,774 units from July to September, lower than the 27,605 units sold in the same period in 2017.

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This brought sales in the first nine months of the year falling 13 percent to 65,917 units from 75,949 units in the comparative period a year ago.

The group blamed the drop to high inflation, interest rate hikes and the surge in oil prices.

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While it did not mention the effects of the TRAIN law, the first tax reform package of the Duterte administration played a part in making vehicles more expensive this year.

The tax package slapped higher excise taxes on most cars, weakening the appetite of consumers especially at a time when inflation has eaten up on the Filipino’s purchasing power.

Nine months under the weight of the law, it remains to be seen when the industry will be able to reverse the trend of falling sales.

“Amid the headwinds, Avid retained its rosy outlook that its wave of new product launches and customer-focused service offerings will augur well for the automotive industry,” said Avid president Fe Perez-Agudo.

Passenger car sales dropped 30 percent in the third quarter, selling only 7,350 units from 10,497 units in the same period last year.

In the first nine months, this segment sold only 23,531 units, 20-percent lower than the 29,266 units sold in the comparative period in 2017.

On the other hand, light commercial vehicles saw an 11-percent drop in sales in the third quarter, selling 15,279 units from 17,108 units previously.

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TAGS: Association of Vehicle Importers and Distributors Inc. (AVID), high inflation, vehicle importers
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