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China: Automotive Sales Down for 12th Consecutive Month

China’s auto sales fell again in June year-on-year (-9.6%), according to a professional federation, with the world’s largest market continuing its decline for the twelfth consecutive month against a background of a sluggish economy.

Last month, sales were down 16.4% year-on-year, the largest decline ever.

A total of 2.05 million vehicles were sold in the Asian country in June, said Wednesday the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM).

The automotive sector “is facing ever greater pressure,” CAAM said on its website.

In recent years, China has become the largest and fastest-growing auto market in the world as a result of increased population incomes and government support.

But for the first time since the 1990s, auto sales fell last year, against a backdrop of economic slowdown and trade tensions with the United States.

In a sluggish economic environment, the major automakers have been forced in recent months to lower their prices.

To support the sector, the government banned local authorities in early June from applying new restrictions on the purchase of vehicles, which are used by cities to reduce congestion and pollution.

Despite a difficult context, the Chinese market has a strong potential for manufacturers in the segment of “new energy” vehicles, that is to say, electric or hybrid: 152,000 units were sold last month (+ 80% on one year), according to the CAAM.

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