In re­verse gear: PV sales de­cline to 18-year low

Au­to­mo­bile body SIAM has asked for ur­gent govt steps to re­vive in­dus­try

DNA (Daily News & Analysis) Mumbai Edition - - FRONT PAGE - Mansi Taneja [email protected]­dia.net

New Delhi: The down­ward spi­ral in the au­to­mo­bile sec­tor con­tin­ued in the sec­ond month of the cur­rent fi­nan­cial year, with pas­sen­ger ve­hi­cle (PV) sales crash­ing 20.5% in May, the high­est de­cline in last 18 years.

In Septem­ber 2001, the ve­hi­cle sales had de­clined 21.91%.

PV sales in May 2019 were down for the sev­enth straight month to 2,39,347 units against 3,01,238 units in the same month last year, ac­cord­ing to data re­leased by the So­ci­ety of In­dian Au­to­mo­bile Man­u­fac­tur­ers (SIAM). In ten out of the last 11 months the sales in the PV seg­ment saw a de­cline, bar­ring Oc­to­ber last year, when they were up 1.55%.

“The downhill drive con­tin­ues in May. Re­tail sales fig­ures are com­par­a­tively bet­ter than whole­sale, which shows that the in­dus­try is tak­ing steps to cut pro­duc­tion. In­ven­tory cor­rec­tion is tak­ing place. We have not wit­nessed such slow­down in the last 15 years,” SIAM direc­tor gen­eral Vishnu Mathur said.

With this kind of a mar­ket sit­u­a­tion, now is the time for the gov­ern­ment to step in and come with some steps to stim­u­late growth, he said.

SIAM has also asked the gov­ern­ment to re­duce goods and ser­vices tax (GST) on all cat­e­gories of ve­hi­cles from 28% to 18% .

SIAM deputy direc­tor gen­eral Su­gato Sen fur­ther added, “Time has come for some se­ri­ous in­ter­ven­tion to be made by the gov­ern­ment for stim­u­lat­ing de­mand in the mar­ket. We thought that post-elec­tion we will see some re­vival but that has not hap­pened. This is un­prece­dented.”

Do­mes­tic car sales de­clined 26.03% to 1,47,546 units as against 1,99,479 units in May 2018.

Mo­tor­cy­cle sales last month were down 4.89% to 11,62,373 units as against 12,22,164 units in the same month pre­vi­ous year.

To­tal two-wheeler sales de­clined 6.73% to 17,26,206 units com­pared to 18,50,698 units in the cor­re­spond­ing pe­riod last fis­cal.

Sales of com­mer­cial ve­hi­cles were down 10.02% to 68,847 units in May. Turn to p2

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