Auto sector sales up 20 pc as demand intensifies

KARACHI: Sales of locally assembled automobiles, including jeeps and light commercial vehicles, jumped to 19,237 units in December 2017, up 20% compared with 16,042 units in the same month of the previous year, showed data released by the Pakistan Automotive Manufacturers Association (PAMA).

Cumulatively, industry sales during the first six months (July to December) of fiscal year 2018 exhibited 27% growth to 124,138 units compared with 97,533 units in the same period of last year.

The change in import procedure in October 2017 has led to a decline in used car imports while rising demand from online ride-hailing services has also contributed to a strong demand in December 2017, according to a Topline Securities report issued on Wednesday. Pak Suzuki continues to be the major beneficiary as majority of used car imports fall under the smaller-engine segment.

The company exhibited robust growth where sales rocketed 29% year-on-year as price conscious models Mehran (up 22% year-on-year), WagonR (up 100% year-on-year), and Cultus (up 15%) all exhibited sales growth.

In the first half (Jul-Dec) of fiscal year 2017-18, sales were up 32% year-on-year for Pak Suzuki to 69,224 units.

Honda Atlas Cars sales stood at 3,213 units in December 2017, staying up 33% year-on-year or down 28% month-on-month due to strong order book.

In first half (Jul-Dec) of fiscal year 2017-18, sales grew 50% year on year to  24,780 units due to success of new models of Honda Civic and Honda BR-V recently revamped Honda City.

Indus Motor, the makers of Toyota Corolla in Pakistan, lagged behind peers with a decline of 3% year-on-year and 14% month-on-month as it continues to face capacity constraints, though in first half (Jul-Dec) of fiscal year 2017-18, sales are up 6% year-on-year, the report said.

Toyota Fortuner sales swelled to 1,638 from 205 units. Suzuki Ravi and Hilux sold 10,738 and 3,171 as against 8,894 and 2,533 units. Honda BRV sales stood at 5,159 units in July-Dec 2017.

In tractors sales of Fiat and Massey Ferguson surged to 12,061 and 20,154 from 7,471 and 13,056 units.

Total truck sales climbed to 4,252 from 3,304 while bus sales fell to 310 from 577 units.

Honda vehicle sales are going strong due to success of new models Civic/BRVand recently revamped City. He said Toyota continued to face capacity constraints, though 1HFY18 units sales are up 6pc year-on-year.

Motorcycle/3-wheeler sales for December 2017 have grown by 9pc year-on-year, due to rising disposable income of lower middle class, while 1HFY18 sales are up 19pc, he said.

Robust sales of locally assembled automobiles provided a contrast with lacklustre imports of used and new cars.

“Only old shipment of used cars are arriving while fresh imports have almost come to a standstill,” All Pakistan Motor Dealers Association Chairman H.M. Shahzad said blaming the amendment in import policy order which has made mandatory for the car sender to pay duty and taxes in US dollar on new and used cars under three schemes.

The auto sector is poised to see a large influx of new investment under the Auto­motive Development Policy 2016–21 that has incentivised greenfield investment in the sector.

According to some reports, close to $800 million is set to pour into the sector in the near future as Kia, Hyundai, Renault and Volkswagen are aiming to start production by 2019.


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