Automobile Imports Down 61% in Guatemala

In February 2009, 1,156 new cars were imported, a drop of 61.5% when compared to the 2,927 new cars imported in February 2008.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

With regard to used vehicle imports, the decrease during the same period was 31.5% because 5,613 units were imported in February 2009 and there were 8,200 during the same period in 2008.

Nelson Escalante, a spokesman for the Used Vehicle Importers Union, told El Periódico of Guatemala, "The economic situation is tough and people are no longer saving to buy a car." He also indicated that if "the Congress of the Republic approves the establishment of the First Registration of Vehicles Tax (Iprima) to replace the current import tariff and surcharge with a rate of 26% on the estimated value of the vehicle, sales could drop between 50% and 60%, leaving about 150 thousand people out of business."

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In the first quarter of this year a total of 7,000 new units were imported, compared with 5,307 in the same period in 2010.

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Guatemalans Switch from Cars to Motorcycles

April 2009

Automotive dealership Cofiño Stahl ventured into the motorcycle market after the collapse in car sales.

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Guatemala auto sales down in tandem with slowdown in economy

June 2008

Sales of automobiles in Guatemala in the first four months of the year were 6.3 percent down on the same period of 2007, in tandem with a slowdown in the economy.

The Association of Vehicle Importers and Distributors said 10,910 units were sold from January through March, down from 11,645 in the 2007 period.

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