China’s car market isn’t immune to the global financial crisis. The second largest car market in the world had its worst year in a decade in 2008 — annual passenger car sales rose just 7.3 per cent. From The Financial Times:
After several years of double-digit growth, car sales slowed dramatically around mid-2008, with sales falling for four months out of the past five, as consumer confidence suffered from the global economic crisis.
Auto market analysts say 2009 could be even worse, though Chinese car sales – which are forecast to rise in low single digits – will still remain a relative bright spot for the world car industry. Analysts think the government will find it hard to meet its target of 10 per cent growth.
Positive growth in 2009 will depend on government measures to support the market. State media have said Beijing is considering reducing or abolishing taxes on car purchases and providing incentives for green car development.