Automakers in Vietnam sold a total of 12,156 vehicles in the first five months of this year, down 18.6 percent over the same period last year, according to the Vietnam Automobile Manufacturers Association (VAMA) on Thursday.
In May, the automakers posted combined sales of 3,499 vehicles, including 1,316 sport utility and multi-purpose vehicles, and 576 passenger automobiles, up 33 percent over April, the VAMA said, attributing the rise to the fact that not many Vietnamese potential customers buy imported second-hand cars as expected due to high selling prices caused by high tariffs.
Toyota Vietnam gained the biggest local market share in May, with 1,120 sold vehicles, up 17 percent from April. Its Innova model was the company's best seller, with sales of 812 units in the month. Truong Hai, a local automaker, ranked the second in sales, with 572 units, followed by Ford with 376 and Japanese- invested Vinastar with 315.
Vietnam currently houses 13 automobile joint ventures with total registered capital of nearly 700 million U.S. dollars and combined annual capacity of 173,000 units, the VAMA said. Besides the ventures, it has many local firms specializing in producing some kinds of automobile parts and assembling low-cost vehicles.
Under a strategy on developing Vietnam's automobile industry, the country will encourage all economic sectors to produce components, especially those of engines, on large scale. Projects on manufacturing common-and special-use vehicles like buses, light lorries, tank trucks and ambulances are to enjoy incentives in terms of land, loan, technology transfer, and research and development, according to the country's Ministry of Industry.