Sunday, September 09, 2007

Car sales in Vietnam surge: auto association

HANOI (AFP) — Automobile sales in Vietnam have risen 80 percent in the first eight months of 2007 with a 156-per cent surge in passengers cars leading the rise, the country's automobile association said Saturday.

Between January and the end of August, 16 of the 18 members of the Vietnam Automobile Manufacturers' Association (VAMA) reported selling 41,557 vehicles against 23,066 in the same period last year.

Topping the list were sales of passengers cars, which rose by 156 percent to 9,320 vehicles as a growing middle class, profiting from Vietnam's annual economic growth of over 8 percent, are switching from mopeds to cars.

Japan's Honda company, which sold 2,296 Vietnam-assembled cars, enjoyed the greatest rise, with sales up 8,404 percent on the same period last year, when it sold only 27 units.

Vidamco, a joint venture of a Vietnamese company and South Korean firm GM Daewoo, followed with a 288 percent increase in sales.

VAMA also said that in August, car sales were up 73 percent year-on-year at 6,559 units against the same month last year.