Myanmar September. Sales up only 10% albeit used cars import restrictions

Myanmar Cars Market Suzuki Ertiga

Myanmar Cars Market started the 2017 below expectations following the huge increase posted last year. Indeed, in the first nine months sales improved just 10%, despite the start of local production made by Suzuki and still fast growing economy.

Myanmar positive news for the economy has been sparse. Output and new orders grew at strong rates in October; however, business confidence fell to a record low and employment contracted. The banking sector is struggling to meet stringent new capital safeguards that were introduced in July. According to the IMF, the Rohingya humanitarian crisis has not yet impacted the economy. Reports have emerged, however, that the tourism sector is starting to feel the effects.

Myanmar, long known as a used-car paradise, is undergoing a drastic change in its automobile industry as the government tries to cultivate local production by restricting second-hand imports. An estimated 120,000 used vehicles were imported from Japan in 2016. From January 2017, imports of right-hand-drive vehicles has been banned in principle and only those built between 2011 and 2014 are qualified for an exemption in exchange for certificates showing the scrapping of older cars.

However, it remains unclear whether restricting used-car imports will boost the new-automobile segment, which has annual sales of just 6,000 units. New vehicles are 50% to 200% pricier than pre-owned vehicles and citizens current purchase power is still quite low to afford the cost of a new vehicle. In addition, Myanmar has no concentration of parts suppliers, making production less cost-efficient as many materials must be imported.

New vehicles market is grow slowly with volume increased from 3.096 units in the 2012 to 6.035 in the 2016 and is projected above 8.000 in the 2018.

  2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 e 2018 e
Car+LCV 3.096 3.000 3.730 6.362 6.035 6.873 8.083

  2012 Var 2013 Var 2014 Var 2015 Var 2016 Var 2017 Var e. 2018 var e
Car+LCV 7,9% -3,1% 24,3% 70,6% -5,1% 13,9% 17,6%

However, demand will gradually shift to new cars booming the market in the next years and attracting OEMs to start local production.

Suzuki Motor has capacity to build 2.700 units a year and sells about 1.000 units in the country, including its Ertiga minivan and Carry small truck and the Ciaz sedan. A new plant is actually under construction to raise annual production to 10.000 units in 2018.

RMA Group, in partnership with Capital Manufacturing Limited (CML) opened a new Ford Assembly Plant in Yangon, which was inaugurated at an official launch ceremony on July 21st 2017. The plant currently assembles the Ford Ranger and Ford Everest with a production capacity of 6.000 vehicles and a potential for semi-auto production capacity of 30.000 vehicles.

Suzuki has been the first to start-up local production with the popular Ertiga, the small Ciaz and the commercial vehicle Carry.

As far as the new vehicles sales trend for the current year, in the first nine months sales have been 4.619, +10.9%

At brand-wise, the leader, Toyota has sold 1.078 units (+6.3% ) followed by Suzuki with 784 sales (+7.3%) and Ford with 381 (+32.8%).

Research, Consulting, Data & Forecast

F2M covers intensively this market with several products developed to help any investigation required. Market Researches in PDF are immediately available for download with study on the market since 2005 and with forecast up to the 2022. AutoData in EXCEL are immediately downloadable with annual sales volume, split by month, for all brands and all models distributed in the market. This year data are released year to date, but you will receive a monthly update until the year-end.  See details within Myanmar Store.


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