BANGKOK, Jan 8 – Thailand’s auto business is expected to grow this year, despite the current political turmoil, with a forecast production volume of 2.6 million units.
Piengjai Kaewsuwan, chairman of the Thai Automotive Industry Association, said the Bangkok shutdown by anti-government protesters on January 13 will affect car sales volume in the country in regards to inconveniences to buyers which could postpone their decisions to buy cars.
Throughout the year, she believed the domestic auto sales will reach 1-1.2 million units.
The production volume in 2014 is expected to reach 2.55-2.6 million units, an increase from last year’s production at 2.49 million units as a result of car stocks from the government’s first-car buyer scheme.
Ms Piengjai said Thailand’s economic forecast this year sees a positive growth of gross domestic product (GDP), therefore the country’s auto industry expects domestic auto market sales to register positive growth as well.
She noted that usually the auto industry has the opportunity to grow by itself owing to new car innovation and new car models continously launched. Other factors encouraging purchasing power are lower interest rates and world oil prices expected at US$100/barrel.