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New vehicle sales in Thailand were slightly higher at 77,907 units in September 2021 from 77,433 units in the same month of last year, according to wholesale data compiled by the Federation of Thai Industries.

The market has begun to stabilise from the sharp losses in the previous months, after the government began to ease the social and business restrictions introduced in mid-July to contain the country’s worse coronavirus outbreak since the pandemic began early last year. Compared with August, the market up by over 84% compared in September.

The recent surge in infections has had a significant impact on domestic consumption and consumer confidence, prompting the government to cut its full-year GDP growth forecast to between 0.7% and 1.2%, while the World Bank now expects growth of just 1% this year.

The global semiconductor shortage has also had a significant impact on vehicle production and sales by key local manufacturers, including market leader Toyota.

Lenders have also reported record numbers of loan rejections as household debt continued to rise.

Domestic vehicle sales in the first nine months of the year were down by 3.2% at 525,913 units after plunging by over 29% at 543,219 units in the same period of last year.

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By GlobalData

With social and business restrictions in the country continuing to be eased, the domestic vehicle market is expected to improve in the final quarter of the year.