Gaikindo Cuts 2012 Forecast on Indonesian Automobile Sales
Faisal Maliki Baskoro, Michael Victor Sianipar & Dion Bisara
The Association of Indonesia Automotive Industry cut its forecast on car sales in the country this year, citing new financing regulations set to go into effect in less than two months.
Sudirman Maman Rusdi, the chairman of the association known as Gaikindo, said on Wednesday that the new forecast was set at around 700,000 units this year, or 30 percent lower than the initial forecast of 1 million.
“The government’s plan to increase the down payment on purchasing cars will cause people to delay their plans to buy a new car,” he said.
Sudirman, who is also president director of Astra Daihatsu Motor, said the most optimistic forecast for car sales was 875,000 units, roughly the same number as last year.
Indonesia’s financial regulators, Bank Indonesia and the Finance Ministry’s Capital Markets and Financial Institution Supervisory Agency (Bapepam-LK) announced in March a regulation, set to take effect in June, that sets a minimum down payment of 30 percent for passenger car purchases, or one-third of the value of the car’s price.
Down payments are now on average around 15 percent of the value of the car.
Sudirman said that 70 percent of car purchases in Indonesia were made through installments or loans.
Some analysts in Jakarta said that the new regulation aided prudent lending practices and any negative impact on consumers would be temporary.
Jachrizal Sumabrata, a transportation expert from University of Indonesia, said the regulation’s effect on sales would be brief.
“As long as Indonesia’s public transportation has yet to offer adequate capacity and comfort, personal vehicles such as cars and motorcycles will always have their markets,” he said.
Jachrizal went on to say that middle-class Indonesians would always prefer cars to public transportation because of their concern for safety, suggesting that car sales would continue to grow.
Sudirman said that 45 percent of car purchases in Indonesia were usually made during the first half of the year. “This year, the second half may see only half of the first-half sales,” he said.
Sudirman noted that first-half sales may reach 500,000 units this year.
“We may likely see a sharp drop in car sales in the second half of this year, when the regulation goes into effect,” the chairman added.
Car sales in the first quarter were up by 250,533 units, an 11 percent increase from the same period last year.
Joko Trisanyoto, the marketing director at Toyota Astra Motor, said that his company had yet to revise its vehicle sales target. Toyota is targeting a 53 percent market share of car sales in Indonesia this year.
“We haven’t changed our target, but we will review our target after the first half,” Joko said.
In the first quarter Toyota sold 96,145 cars with a market share of 38 percent, followed by Daihatsu with 40,099 units, or 16 percent.