Mon, Sep 02, 2013 - Page 14 News List

Auto output to grow marginally: IEK

SLOWING DOWN:In the first seven months of the year, Taiwan’s auto sales fell 2% year-on-year heading into the third quarter, which is traditionally the low season

Staff writer, with CNA

The production value of Taiwan’s auto industry is expected to grow marginally this year amid the gloomy global economy, a local research center said.

The output of the local auto sector, which includes automobiles, auto parts and motorcycles, is likely to total NT$434.82 billion (US$14.51 billion) this year, up 1.5 percent from last year, the Industrial Economics and Knowledge Research Center (IEK) said in a recent research note.

The sector benefited from the launch of new vehicle models and extended promotions announced by automakers in the first and second quarters, which boosted consumer buying, the government-funded center said.

Although local auto sales increased in July, the third quarter is the industry’s traditional low season, and a slight sequential drop is expected, the center predicted.

In July, Taiwan’s auto sales totaled 39,968 units, up 22.7 percent from June, but down 2.1 percent from a year earlier, according to government statistics.

In the first seven months of this year, local auto sales declined at about the same rate of 2 percent year-on-year to 222,295 units, the data showed.

In a separate report, IEK said revenue from local automobile parts would fall 1.4 percent to NT$48.2 billion this quarter, from the second quarter’s NT$48.86 billion.

IEK blamed continuing sluggish demand and weak private consumption in Europe and the US for the decline.

Revenue from Europe and the US accounted for 80 percent of automobile part export revenue, IEK said.

This year, local automobile part manufacturers are expected to grow their revenue by 1.2 percent to NT$198.86 billion from last year, helped by growing demand from emerging markets including China, Middle East and eastern Europe, the research house predicted.

Local carmaker Yulon Motor Co (裕隆) is seeking growth outside the home market.

The carmaker said last month that its Russian partner, Derways Automobile Co, had started manufacturing Luxgen-brand cars, marking the beginning of Yulon’s entrance into the Russian market.

Derways will also be responsible for selling Luxgen cars, Yulon president Yao Chen-hsiang (姚振祥) told a press conference in Taipei.

The Russian firm will begin selling Luxgen 7 sports utility vehicles next month, with a sales target of 500 cars a month, Yao said, adding that Yulon would introduce a new sedan to the Russian market next year.

According to Yulon, 3 million cars a year are sold in Russia.

Russia is Yulon’s second foreign market for Luxgen cars. It entered the Chinese market last year and sold 31,000 cars.

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