Nepal posts big decrease in automobile imports

14:01, July 20, 2011      

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Nepal has seen a big decline in automobile imports in comparision to the previous fiscal year, according to Birgunj Customs Office.

The customs office revealed that in comparison with the previous fiscal year there has been a 11 percent decrease in import of jeeps, cars and vans, 26 percent decrease in passenger vehicles and 33 percent in trucks, mini-trucks.

According to Ashok Temani, Chairman of Birgunj Chamber of commerce and Industry, the decline was due to control by the banks in loans.

"The banks have now controlled the amount they used to release as loan for automobiles," he said.

Temani added that the banks tightened the loans owing to the liquidity crunch.

According to Nepal Automobile Dealers' Association (NADA), there 60 percent of decrease in sales of the vehicles which costs more than 2 million Nepali rupees ( about 28,000 U.S. dollars).

"The sale of vehicles costing less than 2 million has decreased by 30 to 40 percent," NADA informed.

Due to liquidity crisis in Nepal, the central bank, Nepal Rastra Bank has been controlling the loan investment of other banks and financial institution in recent days.

NADA said that due to the strict control of the loan by the banks and financial institutions, the sales of automobile have decreased in an unexpected way.

With dipping automobile sales, importers have halted clearing their vehicles that have arrived at the Birgunj Customs Office.

Around 500 vehicles have been stalled at the Birgunj customs after importers halted clearing their vehicles.

Half of the vehicles which are stranded in the yard of Birgunj customs are imported from third-world countries.

The vehicles are mostly from the companies like Hyundai, Began, Tata, Maruti, Suzuki, Toyota and so on.

Chief Custom Officer of Birgunj customs, Lavanya Kumar Dhakal said the revenue collection will be adversely affected as a result of it.

"About 40 percent of revenue is collected from the imported vehicles," Dhakal said.

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