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Indonesia's auto industry feels coronavirus crunch

Indonesia's auto industry feels coronavirus crunch
Production, sales of motorcycles, cars hit staggering lows, say industry officials

By Iqbal Musyaffa

JAKARTA (AA) - The Indonesian automotive industry has borne the impact of the coronavirus pandemic both in terms of production and sales of two- and four-wheelers, officials said at a virtual conference on Tuesday.

Sigit Kumala, chairman of the commercial division of the Indonesian Motorcycle Industry Association (AISI), said motorcycle sales in the country dropped by 78% at the start of the outbreak, going from 561,739 units in March to 123,782 units in April.

“In May, sales fell by 82.3% as only 21,581 units were sold across the country,” he said.

Sales started gradually improving from then on, reaching 167,992 in June, marking a 669% increase from the previous month.

They went further up by 73.9% in July as 292,205 motorcycles were sold in Indonesia.

As of July, only 2.1 million motorcycles had been sold throughout the country.

“We estimate that only around 3.7 million units will be sold throughout the year, a much lower figure than last year’s 6.48 million,” said Sigit.

According to him, the plunging sales was a result of the COVID-19 restrictions imposed in the country since March.

- Sluggish car sales

Kukuh Kumara, secretary general of the Association of Indonesia Automotive Industries (Gaikindo), said the production of four-wheelers hit its lowest point of 2,510 units in May.

Car sales also dropped to 3,551 in the same month, before recovering to 24,397 and 25,383, respectively, the next month.

Kukuh said the situation remains far from ideal as Indonesia has the capacity to produce 2.3 million cars per year.

According to the association’s data, car sales in Indonesia stood at about 1.05 million units per year before the pandemic.

“We have revised the domestic sales target to only 600,000 units this year, while the production target is 775,000 units,” the official said.

Gaikindo also plans to explore more export markets in collaboration with the Indonesian government and relevant ministries, he added.

*Writing by Maria Elisa Hospita


source: News Feed
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