More Pinoys aim for a new car

The number of Filipinos who intend to buy a car grew as overall consumer confidence improved in the first quarter.

Data from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas showed that five of 100 Filipinos want to purchase a motor vehicle in the next 12 months. This is an improvement over the 4:100 ratio based on a central bank survey in the last quarter of 2008.

The volume of car purchases in the next 12 months may be higher in areas outside the national capital region (AONCR).

"Consumers from the NCR [at 5.7] percent were more cautious in buying big-ticket items in the next 12 months compared to their counterparts from AONCR," the central bank said.

The report gave the Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines, Inc. (CAMPI) a boost amid a bleak economic outlook for 2009.

"That's great. We hope the ratio would be higher for the industry," CAMPI president Elizabeth H. Lee said.

Car companies sold 124,449 units of vehicles in the Philippines in 2008.

CAMPI hopes to buck the global trend of declining car sales as its members target an industry growth of two to four percent this year.
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