New car sales drop
72 percent to below 6,200
Access to foreign currency
denied even for spare parts
The number of new passenger cars registered in 2020 plummeted 72 percent compared with the previous year, according to the Association of Automobile Importers (AIA). Most of the sold cars fall into the small and low budget category.
Source: Association of Automobile Importers
Car dealers, like most importers, are not able to secure foreign currency to pay for their imports, and this has also contributed to the decline in sales. Selim Saad, advisor to AIA, said that the Central Bank has turned down the request of car dealers to have access to foreign currency even for the import of spare parts.
The decline in car sales was reflected on the taxes paid on vehicles including customs duties, VAT, and registration fees. These taxes fell from $265 million in 2018, to $165 million in 2019, and are estimated at $33 million in 2020, Saad said.
Date Posted: Jan 21, 2021