Car importers set 42,000 sales target this year

Louella Desiderio (The Philippine Star) - February 2, 2015 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The country’s group of vehicle importers wants to grow its sales up to 42,000 units this year as it expects strong demand for cars amid positive economic growth.

Association of Vehicle Importers and Distributors Inc. (AVID) president Ma. Fe Perez-Agudo told reporters the group wants to sell 40,000 to 42,000 units this year, up from last year’s 35,565 units.

“For the year 2015, that is going to be a working target. We are going to be reviewing it on a quarterly basis if adjustments have to be made as we believe the country is still reaping (benefits) from the different activities that have happened here,” she said.

The country’s hosting of the World Economic Forum last year as well as the recent visit of Pope Francis are seen to have helped raise the profile of the Philippines to investors.

Agudo said the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation Summit to be held in the country this year, is likewise seen to bring attention to the Philippines and show what business opportunities are available here.

“So this would again be a big boost to our economic indicators and I am sure it will impact positively the automotive industry,” she said.

The growth in AVID’s vehicle sales is expected to be driven by small passenger cars and sports utility vehicles (SUV).

“If you look at the 300,000-unit target (for total vehicle industry sales) this year, according to industry players it is very doable, so we are looking also to contribute to that growth for 2015,” Agudo said.

Earlier, the Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines Inc. (CAMPI) which groups the country’s vehicle assemblers, said it also expects to continue to see strong demand for vehicles particularly the small passenger car segment which is preferred by young professionals and those working in the business process outsourcing industry.

The group said  SUVs and light commercial vehicles are also seen as popular picks for purchases as they can be used to combat floods.

With the strong demand for vehicles seen to continue this year on the back of positive economic growth and falling global oil prices, the CAMPI said it expects total vehicle sales to exceed 300,000 units.

Combined sales of the CAMPI and the Truck Manufacturers Association Inc. reached 234,747 units last year, up 30 percent from 181,283 units in 2013.

AGUDO ASIA PACIFIC ECONOMIC COOPERATION SUMMIT ASSOCIATION OF VEHICLE IMPORTERS AND DISTRIBUTORS INC CHAMBER OF AUTOMOTIVE MANUFACTURERS OF THE PHILIPPINES INC FE PEREZ-AGUDO POPE FRANCIS TRUCK MANUFACTURERS ASSOCIATION INC UNITS WORLD ECONOMIC FORUM YEAR
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