MENA August. Iraq & Yemen soaring in a market down 0.8%


MENA Car Market in August went down 0.8% with 152.991 units sold. However, year-to-date figures are still on a positive score (+2.6%). Iraq and Yemen growing at fast speed – improving over 50% – while Bahrain, Morocco, Oman and Syria are declining in double-digits.


Economic Environment

While oil production cuts have significantly weighed on MENA’s economic growth this year, this situation could reverse if the OPEC+ deal ends in March 2020 as planned. Irrespective, regional geopolitical threats and domestic political unrest will continue to put downward pressure on growth this year and, probably, also in 2020

Regional inflation fell for the third consecutive month in August, to 7.1% from 8.0% in July. Lower readings in Algeria, Egypt and Iran led the decrease in August. Overall, the recent downward trend reflects cheap oil prices, subdued economic growth in some key economies in the region and a severe downturn in certain real estate markets such as Qatar and Saudi Arabia.

Market Trend

The automotive industry in the Middle East and North Africa region has stopped its growth in the 2014, immediately after having hit the 3 million units milestone for the first time.

Since 2014 the market declined to 2.02 million units in the 2017 and will further lose this year.

The key reason of the decline is related to the fall of oil price in the international market, which created deficit in Gulf countries, moving governments to apply restrictive economic policy and to increase taxes, with VAT introduced for the first time in Saudi Arabia and UAE. Additional reason for the Algerian market fall are related to the new automotive national plan, introduced in the 2014, which killed the market.

In the 2018 data report sales volume at 1.92 million (-5.3%) with the regional performance dragged down by heavy lost in Saudi Arabia, down 22.1%, and in the second largest market, Israel, down 5.7%. On positive tone Algeria, thanks to the start-up of several local plants and up 27.9%, and Iraq, after the end of civil war, up 45.3%.

After closing the First Half on a positive score, the MENA region registered a negative performance in August, with sales at 152.991 (-0.8%). However, year-to-date figures are still on a positive path, with registrations at 1.30 million (+2.6%).

Rank 1019Rank 2018BrandSales Aug YTD 2019+/- YTD 2019Share YTD Aug 2019
11Saudi Arabia317.75215,4%24,4%