MANILA, Philippines–The Philippine automotive industry still lags behind its peers in the Asean in terms of vehicle sales and production, even as local players have consistently post strong, double-digit growths since the start of the current year.
Data from the Asean Automotive Federation (AAF) showed that the Philippines posted a 29.2-percent rise in motor vehicles sales to 169,727 units from January to September this year, ranking fourth among seven Asean states.
The country’s sales volume, however, accounted for only 7 percent of the total volume of vehicles sold in the region, which stood at 2.38 million units during the period.
Indonesia continued to account for the biggest sales volume at 932,943 units in the first nine months, up by only 2.7 percent from a year ago. Thailand came in second with sales of 648,410 units, down 37.3 percent from a year ago. Malaysia sold 492,305 units, up by 0.9 percent.
Motor vehicle sales in Vietnam (fifth), Singapore (sixth) and Brunei (seventh) stood at 90,043 units, 33,533 units and 13,722 units, respectively.
In terms of production, the Philippines remained locked in the bottom, having produced only 67,610 units in the first nine months of the year, up 15.9 percent from 58,326 units recorded a year ago.
Thailand remained the front-runner in the region in the production of motor vehicles, having assembled 1.409 million units from January to September. This, however, was down by 27 percent from a year ago, data from the AAF showed.
Indonesia produced 993,720 units for the same period, followed by Malaysia which produced 452,167 units, and Vietnam, with 85,842 units.
For this year, the Philippine automotive sector expects total vehicle sales to reach more than 260,000 units, higher than the earlier forecasts made by Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines Inc.