Estimates of car sales in Europe predict a record 25% drop this year.
This is another blow of COVID-19 on various business sectors – airlines, bus carriers, restaurants, travel agencies and all companies in the chain, restaurants and the entertainment industry in general. All of this, along with mass layoffs and calls or direct orders to stay at home, has led to a record collapse in demand and is threatening some of the largest industries.
Only 9.6 million cars are expected to be sold in the European Union, up from 12.8 million last year, the European Automobile Manufacturers Association said in its first forecast in January, before the continent’s health crisis unfolded.
This is the steepest decline and represents a kind of record, and in net terms the values represent the lowest number of cars sold since 2013, when the industry had just emerged from a prolonged decline after the financial crisis in 2008.
The exact form of the potential recovery remains unclear as carmakers from Volkswagen AG to Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV are preparing to announce results next month. The data are likely to be disastrous for the second quarter. France, Germany and Spain presented aid packages to the industry, while Britain’s main car dealership group called for government support, saying one in six jobs is at risk.
Macron promises an additional incentive for French carmakers.
“Given the unprecedented collapse in sales to date, EU-wide purchase incentives and scrapping schemes are urgently needed to create much-needed demand for new cars,” said Mark Mark Huythema, CEO of the European Group. , known as ACEA in a statement, Bloomberg reported. About 11% of manufacturing jobs in Europe are in the automotive sector.
The EU market has shrunk by 41.5% since the beginning of the year to date, according to ACEA, which expects sales to recover slightly and gradually in the coming months as measures loosen and life slowly returns to normal. . Newly registered cars across Europe fell by 57% compared to last year.
Disruptions to the European car industry began to be felt in the first two months of the year, when the virus shut down auto parts factories in China’s Hubei province, where the epidemic began. With the spread of Covid-19 worldwide, European countries have adopted strict health measures that have closed car dealerships and production facilities for about two months and left consumers at home.
European industry is now looking to China for signs of hope that a boom will follow. Car sales there rose for the first time in almost a year last month, with retail sales of cars, SUVs and multi-purpose vehicles up 1.9 percent from a year earlier.
At an industrial conference in the UK on Tuesday, Volkswagen’s head of group sales Christian Dalheim said that car sales in China were returning to normal and “even slightly better in terms of our levels”, reaching 70% of normal levels. month in the EU.