Vehicle sales continue downward trend

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Windhoek

The National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa (NAAMSA) recently released the November 2015 new vehicle sales numbers for Namibia, which is considered by many as an adequate barometer of the national economy. The association noted that total monthly vehicle sales dropped by 46 units to 1 721 units, compared to 1 767 units recorded in October 2015.

“During November, government cancelled some tenders as a scheme to cut government expenditure and to support fiscal squeeze. We expect the vehicle sales to continue its downward trend, at least to the first quarter of 2016,” said Indileni Nanghonga, an analyst from stock-broking firm, Simonis Storm Securities.

Vehicles sales dropped by 271 units from 1992 units the prior year, which is an annual decline of -13.6 percent and a -2.6 percent on a monthly basis. The slight drop in the number of vehicles sold in November was attributed to a 19.1 percent monthly drop in passenger vehicles sales, 44.2 percent drop in medium commercial vehicle sales and 39.6 percent drop in extra heavy vehicles.

Despite the drop in total vehicle sales, big jumps were recorded in light commercial vehicles (114 units), heavy commercial vehicles (13 units) and buses (6 units). Figure 1 shows the growth rate of total vehicle sales. Overall vehicle sales slowed at a rate of -2.6 percent month-on-month at the end of November 2015.

On an annual basis, growth in the overall number of vehicles sold remains negative. This was, however, a slight recovery from the -15.5 percent year-on-year decline experienced as at October 2015. The monthly new vehicle sales was fuelled by light commercial vehicles, heavy commercial vehicles and buses while narrowing growth was seen in passenger vehicles sales, medium commercial vehicles and extra-heavy vehicles.

The value of vehicle sales remained steady at N$5.98 billion in November 2015, which is the same compared to the prior month. This is lower compared to the N$6.60 billion in the prior year.

From January to November 2015 the total vehicle vehicles sold stood at 19 661 units at the suggested retail value of N$68.5 billion, compared to 19 887 units at the suggested retail value of N$65.3 billion recorded during the same period in 2014. Slow growth in household instalment credit is reflected in the moderate growth in passenger vehicles sales.

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