Recently published research from Business Monitor International, "Croatia Autos Report 2013", is now available at Fast Market Research
Boston, MA -- (SBWIRE) -- 02/05/2013 -- New passenger car sales in Croatia grew by 7.7% year-on-year (y-o-y) in 2011, to 41,561 units, according to figures released by local market research company Promocija Plus. Light commercial vehicle (LCV) sales totalled 3,626 units. This makes for a total of 45,187 passenger cars and LCVs sold in Croatia over 2011.
Looking at trends so far in 2012, LCV sales were down by 3.6% over the first four months of 2012 (most recent data available), to reach just 1,159 units. New passenger car sales have fared even worse, down by 21% over the first 10 months of the year, to just 28,398 units, according to Promocija Plus. Against this unprepossessing backdrop, BMI is forecasting a 9.3% decline in new passenger car sales in 2012, to reach 37,696 units, with risks now very much to the downside.
Moving forward, BMI remains fairly downbeat on the near-term outlook for new car sales, forecasting a 3.9% increase for 2013. Although BMI forecasts a return to growth (of 1%) in 2013, weak domestic demand and a weak labour market will continue to suppress demand, especially for 'big ticket' items such as new car purchases. Moreover, the recent announcement by Finance Minister Slavko Linic that Croatia plans to abolish all import duties on used cars effective from January 1 2013 - a requirement of the country's planned accession to the EU in July 2013 - will also act as a clear drag on new car sales, as Croatians may now look to buy cheaper secondhand imports from elsewhere in Europe.
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Beyond 2013, BMI believes there is scope for new car sales in Croatia to grow at a more rapid pace, as the benefits of EU membership (such as an influx of structural funds, greater levels of foreign direct investment and a likely boost to consumer and business confidence) combine to drive forward the economy, and by extension new car sales.
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