Auto industry off to slow start in new year, sales tumble 11.8% in January

Published February 19, 2020, 12:00 AM

by manilabulletin_admin


The domestic motor vehicle industry started the year on a slow note with sales plummeting 11.8 percent in January due to delays caused by the eruption of Taal Volcano.

Joint sales data from the Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines, Inc. and Truck Manufacturers Association (CAMPI-TMA) showed January sales reaching only 23,723 units or 11.8 percent decline from the 26,888 units sold in the same month last year.

CAMPI President Atty. Rommel Gutierrez said that the industry expects this growth slowdown mainly due to the adverse effect of the recent Taal Volcano eruption.

“Majority of plants and some dealerships located in South Luzon were badly hit by ashfall, also affecting operations in some areas of Metro Manila. Some companies were also forced to temporarily suspend its operations for safety reasons,” said Gutierrez.

Compared to December 2019, data showed a deeper decline of 29.6 percent. Gutierrez explained this to the seasonal high month sales of December.
Despite the slow start, he maintained that the industry is “brimming with optimism” that a recovery is underway in the coming months now that operations are back on track.

In January, all vehicle segments and categories were down except for Asian utility vehicles and the large trucks and buses (Category V).

Of total vehicle sales, the passenger car segment dipped by 22.9 percent to 6,543 units only from 26,888 units in January 2019 while the commercial vehicle segment declined by 6.6 percent to 17,180 units from 18,401 units.

Among the categories under the commercial vehicle segment, the AUV category posted a slight 2.9 percent increase to 2,479 units from 2,410 units. The light commercial vehicle or the sports utility vehicle segment also dropped by 7 percent to 13,988 units from 15,037 units.

Sales of light trucks went down by 28.7 percent to 366 units only from 332 in January 2019 while trucks and buses (category IV) dipped by 29.8 percent to 233 units from 332 units. The large trucks and buses (category V) improved by 4.5 percent to 115 units from 110 units in January 2019.