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April 1, 2010

CHINA: Car sales seen slowing

While China's automotive market and industry has been a big beneficiary of government stimulus measures, some analysts believe that its rapid rate of growth could be losing momentum.

While China’s automotive market and industry has been a big beneficiary of government stimulus measures, some analysts believe that its rapid rate of growth could be losing momentum.

Analysts expect that Chinese car sales for March will post a 30-40 percent rise when the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM) reports monthly sales next week.

That would constitute a slowdown from the combined 67 percent growth in January and February as sales rebounded strongly against year-ago levels.

Analysts say that sales will slow as the year progresses because the comparison will be against stronger figures last year when the boost from government stimulus measures kicked in.

Many analysts believe that growth for the year will be in the region of 10%.

JD Power says that light-vehicle sales in China are expected to reach 14m units in 2010, an increase of 8 percent from 2009. This is a conservative estimate based on the current selling rate, JD Power says.

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