The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy announced on September 12 that production, domestic sales, and exports of automobiles jumped by double-digit rates in August.
The number of vehicles produced by five domestic carmakers -- Hyundai Motor, Kia Motors, GM Korea, Ssangyong Motor, and Renault Samsung Motors -- surged 26.3 percent to 274,166 units in August from a year earlier when large-scale strikes slowed down production.
Domestic sales that include imported vehicles advanced 11.7 percent to 139,107 cars from a year ago when sales sharply declined due to the end of temporary tax cuts for automobiles. The launch of new vehicles also contributed to the double-digit growth in car sales.
Domestic consumers purchased 120,412 vehicles produced in Korea, up 12.5 percent from a year ago, while the sales of imported vehicles expanded 6.4 percent to 18,695 units.
Automobile exports leaped 24.1 percent year-on-year to 174,363 units thanks to strong sales of Korean-produced cars in Europe and Oceania. Shipments to the European Union in terms of value, for instance, soared 86.5 percent to $329 million.
Meanwhile, the number of automobiles produced and sold abroad by Korean companies contracted 14.7 percent to 336,012 on slow sales in major markets including China and the U.S.
Outbound shipments of automobile parts inched down 0.1 percent to $1.9 billion due to reduced production in Korean companies’ overseas plants in Asia, especially in China. This offset the increase in exports to Europe and growing shipments of knockdown kits to the Middle East.
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