The outlook for domestic car sales remains bright this year with sales rising although car exports will drop for the 11th consecutive month in May.
Surapong Paisitpattanapong, spokesman for the automotive indusyry club of the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI), said that the domestic auto sales in May 2017 increased continuously to 66,422 units, or 0.6 percent rise year-on-year.
This reflected positive economic outlook in the country.
But overall picture of the auto industry, he said in the first five months of this year, domestic auto sales amounted to 340,179 units in total, a 12.4% increase year-on-year.
As a result, he said the FTI has now projected that the domestic auto sales will reach its target at 800,000 units for the whole year of 2017.
But at the same time, auto exports dropped for the 11th consecutive month in May to 90,092 units, a 9.5% drop from the same period last year, representing a drop in auto exports value of 48 billion baht, or 12.69% decline year-on-year.
Auto export ratio to the Middle East market plummeted from 25% to less than 8% due mainly to a restricted rule on diesel engine emission.
But it is expected that the production of diesel engine vehicles will be phased out by the next 10 years as the world’s leading car manufacturers plan to convert to producing more hybrid and plug-in hybrid and electric cars.
Source: Thai Public Broadcasting Service (Thai PBS)