Thailand loses to Malaysia as Asean's second-biggest auto market

BANGKOK: Thailand has been overtaken by its southern neighbour Malaysia, which is now South-East Asia's second-largest auto market after Indonesia, Nikkei Asia reported on Wednesday (May 15).

The change in ranking is a major shift in a region that has become a key battleground for Asian automakers, the Japanese-based online news magazine noted.

The report said that Malaysia's sales figures, which had come in third for a long time, topped Thailand's for three consecutive quarters through January-March 2024.

According to the Malaysian Automotive Association, auto sales increased 5% in the first quarter from a year earlier to 202,245 vehicles. This followed an 11% increase in 2023 to a record 799,731 vehicles.

The jump was reportedly a result of sales tax exemptions for domestically produced vehicles, part of the government's economic stimulus package, resulting in increasing sales of national car brands Perodua and Proton, which held about 60% of the market share.

Meanwhile, sales in Thailand have been in a slump, with a significant drop of 25% in the first quarter from a year earlier.

Nikkei Asia said Thailand's monthly auto sales have declined year-on-year starting last June due to increasing NPL in auto loans and general stagnant consumption. However, the share of electric vehicles has been growing thanks to the entry of Chinese automakers.

The report said Indonesia, too, is experiencing low momentum. Auto sales in the first quarter fell 24% year on year as interest rates rose, leading consumers to hold back on purchases.

Vietnam also reported falling auto sales by 16% year on year in the first quarter due to slumping exports and other factors.

Meanwhile, figures in the Philippines increased 13% in the first quarter, the highest among the five countries, after inflation eased to around 4% in late 2023 and consumer spending remained strong. - The Nation/ANN

Follow us on our official WhatsApp channel for breaking news alerts and key updates!

Thailand , auto sales , Malaysia , Asean


Next In Aseanplus News

Three more convicts in RM10.5bil money laundering case deported to Cambodia, says Singapore Immigration
Olympic-bound Zii Jia captures Australian Open title after beating Kodai
Domestic Trade Ministry working with authorities to end diesel smuggling in border areas
Retiree, 65, remarried with young child, allowed to halve maintenance for ex-wife to RM2,050 a month
Seoul in ‘emergency mode’ as doctors set to kick off new protests vs health reform plan
Singapore beachfront shops face thin crowds after oil spill forces beach closures
Prabowo adviser denies plans to raise Indonesia's debt to 50% of GDP
Thai Senate likely to approve landmark same-sex marriage bill this week
Global K-pop girl group Katseye confirms US debut on June 28; Philippine lass Sophia among six member group
Ringgit seen trading softer at 4.70 to 4.71 against US dollar this week

Others Also Read