Brazil to post car production, sales highs in 2009: bank chief

10:59, October 27, 2009      

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Brazil's central bank chief on Monday predicted records for both the country's car production and sales this year thanks to a recovering economy.

Central bank governor Henrique Meirelles told a National Association of Credit, Financing and Investment Institutions meeting in Sao Paulo that the credit costs had been back to levels prior to the international financial crisis and that the auto market would probably expect good sales and production records this year.

So far this year, according to the central bank chief, the car production and sales figures have been better in each and every month compared with last year.

"All this happened because proper measures have been taken at the right time and restricted to specific segments of the economy", he said.

Car makers in Brazil have been blessed by a combination of new models, lower credit costs and a tax cut, which combined to take 7.4 percent off the sticker price of popular car models.

The tax break, in place since December last year till Oct. 1 this year, helped to curb a steep drop in sales.

Brazil sold 2.3 million units of motor vehicles in the first eight months of this year, compared to 2.2 million units sold during the same period last year.

The country's September car sales posted their best single month ever with a record-breaking sale of 308,718 vehicles.

The central banker said that the country now has the conditions to resume growth, since employment and credits were both increasing.

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