Russia: September sales plummet 20% image

The country’s new car deliveries continued to spiral downward as sales dropped 20% after they fell 26% in August. The Ukrainian crisis and the general weakness of the economy continued to take their toll.

Russia’s feeble economy, which already showed signs of weakness last year when new car sales dropped after years of continued growth, has been severely impacted in 2014 as the western sanctions against Russia continue to mount. The economic sanctions have been imposed by the European Union, America and other nations over the continued implication in the conflict in Ukraine.

Last month, according to the Moscow-based Association of European Businesses (AEB) lobby group, sales dropped to 197,233 passenger cars and light commercial vehicles and for the first nine months deliveries have fallen 13% to 1.78 million units.

“Until year end, the negative sales trend should be mitigated somewhat as a result of government measures in support of domestic vehicle production,” comments Joerg Schreiber, chairman of the AEB automobile manufacturers committee.

The AEB also said the forecast for the full year is for a slower 12% drop to 2.45 million vehicles as the Russian government decided to step in and introduce a new scrappage scheme to help alleviate the situation. The officials pledged in August a total of 10 billion rubles (207 million euros) for incentives supporting new car sales in 2014. The program is just a revival of the one that was offered during the years of the financial crisis of 2008-2009.

Via Automotive News Europe