The Russian government will support the country’s automobile industry, which has seen a drop in activity, during the financial crisis, President Dmitry Medvedev has said.

The government will possibly subsidize interest rates on loans that car producers pay to banks, Medvedev said.
Car producers will most likely have to revise their production plans due to the crisis, he also said.

State assistance for Russian carmakers was written into a USD200 billion state aid package, including a provision to lower interest rates on loans taken by car manufacturers.

Early this month, the government also sharply raised import tariffs on second-hand foreign cars, a protectionist measure for which the industry has long lobbied.