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Vehicle output slips by 40%, 2nd worst in Southeast Asia
Data from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Automotive Federation (AAF) showed the Philippines assembled 5,182 motor vehicles in January, down 40 percent from the 8,616 motor vehicles produced in the same month last year.
STAR/ File

Vehicle output slips by 40%, 2nd worst in Southeast Asia

Louella Desiderio (The Philippine Star) - March 3, 2021 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Production of motor vehicles in the country remained in low gear in January as car assemblers keep their output aligned with consumer demand.

In the case of motorcycles, however, production raced to double-digit growth in the same month, indicating stronger preference for the two-wheeled vehicle for business, work or personal travel needs.

Data from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Automotive Federation (AAF) showed the Philippines assembled 5,182 motor vehicles in January, down 40 percent from the 8,616 motor vehicles produced in the same month last year.

The Philippines posted the second biggest drop in motor vehicle production in ASEAN in January, next to Myanmar, where motor vehicle output contracted by 45 percent.

Other ASEAN countries that also registered lower year-on-year motor vehicle production in January are Indonesia (33 percent), Malaysia (13 percent) and Thailand (five percent).

Vietnam was the only country in Southeast Asia where motor vehicle output surged 82 percent to 19,284 units in January from 10,616 units in the same month the previous year.

Total vehicles assembled in ASEAN slid 14 percent to 288,784 units in January from 335,031 units in the same month a year ago.

In terms of motor vehicle sales, the Philippines registered a slight dip to 23,380 units in January from 23,723 units in the same month last year.

Other ASEAN countries with reduced motor vehicle sales in January are Indonesia (34 percent), Malaysia (24 percent)  and Thailand (23 percent).

Meanwhile, ASEAN countries where motor vehicle sales went up are Vietnam (69 percent), Myanmar (25 percent) and Singapore (11 percent).

Motor vehicles sold in ASEAN reached a total of 200,200 units in January, an 18 percent contraction from the previous year’s 242,669 units.

Earlier, Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines Inc. president Rommel Gutierrez said the group remains cautiously optimistic as the COVID-19 pandemic and provisional safeguard measures imposed on certain imported vehicles are seen to affect sales performance.

AAF data showed that while Philippine motor vehicle production and sales were down, motorcycles assembled in the country rose 23 percent to 87,169 units in January from 71,106 units in the same month a year ago.

Growth in motorcycle production in the Philippines was higher than that of neighbors Malaysia and Thailand where motorcycle output climbed by 6.4 percent and 1.7 percent, respectively, in January.

Motorcycles made in ASEAN reached 303,584 units in January, eight percent higher than the 281,785 units in the same month last year.

As for motorcycle sales, the Philippines sold 125,733 units in January, 1.6 percent lower than the 127,793 units in the previous year.

Other countries where motorcycle sales slowed in January are Thailand (six percent) and Singapore (0.6 percent).

Meanwhile, Malaysia’s motorcycle sales grew 11 percent to 52,600 units in January from 47,207 units in the same month a year ago.

Total motorcycle sales in ASEAN declined two percent to 314,947 units in January from last year’s 320,971 units.

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