KARACHI: Imports of completely built-up (CBU) vehicles rose 36.32 per cent to $289 million during the first seven months (July-January) of 2015-16 from $212m in the same period last year.
According to Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS), imports of CBU buses, trucks and other heavy vehicles increased to $99.6m from $62m, followed by a jump in imports of cars (mostly used) to $187m from $149m and $2.2m in CBU bikes as compared to $993,000 a year ago.
Imports of completely knocked-down (CKD) and semi knocked-down (SKD) kits grew 19.95pc to $493m from $411m in July-January 2014-15.
During the period, imports of CKD/SKD heavy vehicles increased to $139m from $87m, while import of kits for assembly of cars jumped to $289.5m from $272m and for bikes to $64m from $51.5m.
In 2014-15, CBU vehicles import stood at $407m against $334m a year ago, while CKD/SKD imports were at $770m as compared to $546m in 2013-14.
The local industry passes the currency impact on cost of CKD/SKD imports to the buyers, which nullifies its claim of achieving record localisation.
Car sales, during the period, rose to 107,907 units from 74,497 a year ago.
Sales of Suzuki Ravi and Bolan, under Punjab’s Apna Rozgar Scheme, fall in interest rate and decline in petrol prices played a big role in boosting car sales.
Overall bus/truck sales climbed to 3,246 units from 2,326 in the same period last year.
However, the new auto policy draft posted on the website of Engineering Development Board (EDB) was a sheer disappointment for used car importers owing to no change in duty structure, said All Pakistan Motor Dealers Association (APMDA) Chairman H.M. Shahzad.
He said that the government has always given incentives to the car assemblers, who in return kept increasing prices besides freezing localisation after the Tariff Based System (TBS).
The draft offers a number of duty incentives for the local assemblers, he added.
He said that used cars were also being imported by the United States, United Kingdom, India and some Far Eastern countries.
Indus Motor Company’s (IMC) annual report 2015 revealed that the new Corolla comprises of 760 parts and components manufactured locally as compared to just 33 parts used in 1993.
Pakistan Association of Auto Parts and Accessories Manufacturers (PAAPAM) claimed that its members have achieved local content of up to 70pc in case of passenger cars and LCVs, 90pc in bikes and tractors and 45pc in heavy commercial vehicles.
Auto financing increased to Rs97.7 billion in January 2016 which was at Rs97bn in the preceding month as per the figures of credit/loans classified by the borrowers (outstanding position at the end of month) released by the State Bank.
Rising imports of CKD/SKD units suggested a brisk future demand for locally produced cars followed by arrival of some new models.
However, the launch of new Honda Civic, which was planned early this year, has been delayed.
“We expect the launch with exciting features next year,” Shabbir Alibhai, CEO of Honda Quaideen Motors, said.
Courtesy : Dawn News