Thailand Autos Report Q1 2013 - New Market Research Report
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Boston, MA -- (SBWire) -- 02/07/2013 --BMI believes the outlook is very bright for the Thai automotive industry as we enter 2013. The industry has bounced back strongly from the damage caused by the heavy flooding in Q411, which closed several domestic production lines and caused extensive damage to supply chains across Asia. Barring any unforeseen circumstances (such as a repeat of the flooding), the Thai auto industry looks set for a recordbreaking sales and production performance in 2012. On a longer-term basis, the Thai auto sector looks set for strong growth across our newly extended forecast period to 2017.
Looking at the most recent monthly sales data, it is clear that demand for new cars remains strong in Thailand. September 2012 data from the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI) showed a 52.5% increase year-on-year (y-o-y) to hit 132,680 units, an all time-high. Cumulative sales for the first nine months of 2012 are up by almost 50%, at 998,717 units, putting the country well on track to hit BMI's forecast of 1.33mn units, a growth rate of 72.6%. As such, BMI is maintaining its forecasts this quarter and believes that the remaining three months of 2012 will continue to experience strong annual growth rates. These strong growth rates will be in part due to the base effects of 2011, when sales were hit badly in the last few months of the year due to the devastating floods which hit the country.
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Lending strong support to new car sales across 2012 has been the government's 'first car scheme', which gives buyers rebates on their first car purchase. Another supportive factor for new Thai vehicle sales has been the October interest rate cut of 25 basis points by The Bank of Thailand (BoT). This will make car financing deals cheaper for Thai consumers. A car is an aspiration for many urban and rural buyers alike in Thailand. These consumers are likely to take advantage of the cheaper financing to purchase new cars.
Strong sales are also aiding domestic production levels. Domestic vehicle output grew by 31% y-o-y, to 228,500 units, in September. Cumulative nine-month production totalled 1.73mn units, up by 32.8% y-oy. For now, BMI maintains its full-year production forecast of 2.2mn units for 2012, with risks again very much to the upside, especially given the strong base effects from Q411.
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