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Philippine auto industry expands by 27.2% in 2010

  From XinhuaJanuary 11, 2011

The Philippines' local auto industry grew double digits in 2010, the highest in 14 years, officials said Saturday.

Chambers of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines, Inc. ( CAMPI) President Elizabeth Lee said that car sales last year expanded by 27.2 percent to 168,490 units, surpassing the industry' s highest ever sales benchmark of 162,000 units in 1996.

"It's about time the industry surpassed that benchmark. 2010 was an auspicious year for the auto industry, showing strong growth backed by major accomplishments that will help the industry as a whole move forward," she said.

Overall December sales grew by 1.7 percent where the industry sold 13,749 units.

Lee expressed optimism for this year's local auto industry, citing the favorable overall economic environment with sustained business and consumer confidence, gross domestic product growth, stable foreign exchange rate, positive forecast for overseas Filipino workers' remittances, manageable inflation rate forecast, continued healthy financing environment, as well as new model introductions by auto players.

CAMPI's initial growth forecast for 2011 sales is about 4-5 percent as the industry expects sales this year to more or less follow the regular seasonality typical of auto sales.

The sales forecast will be adjusted accordingly on a per quarter basis, she said.

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