New vehicle sales in Vietnam fell by 21.7% to 8,773 units in November, from 11,198 units a year earlier, according to the Vietnam Automotive Manufacturers Association.

This latest decline more than wiped out the gains made in recent months, bringing year-to-date sales to 98,709 units - just over 1% lower than the 99,739 vehicles sold a year earlier. 

Consumers and local businesses continue to struggle with retail interest rates of over 20%, reflecting the weak local currency and high inflation.

Passenger car sales fell by 15% to 3,190 units, bringing the year to-date sales to 36,428 units – up 23.9% year-on-year. Sales of SUVs and SUVs and MPVs fell by 7% to 1,698 units, with year-to-date sales down by 4% at 20,436 units.

Commercial vehicle sales have suffered most from the tough business conditions, with sales down by 22% in November at 3,622 units and down 16% year-to-date at 41,303 units.

Businesses increasingly resort to buying used commercial vehicles imported mainly from South Korea and China. This help reduces the high initial cost of buying vehicles, which are subject to high import duties.

Truong Hai, which assembles Kia cars and various commercial vehicles, led the market over the 11-month period with sales rising by close to 22% to 28,556 units; followed by Toyota with 27,218 units (-1%); and GM Daewoo with 9,223 units (+7%).

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