Car sales down by 27 percent
PANAMA. Sales of automobiles in Panama fell by 27 percent in the first semester of 2009 in comparison with the same period last year, s...
PANAMA. Sales of automobiles in Panama fell by 27 percent in the first semester of 2009 in comparison with the same period last year, said a report of the Automobile Distributors Association (ADAP). The report said that in the first six months of the year, 16,150 vehicles were sold in Panama, whilst for the same period in 2008, 22,227 units were purchased.
The distributors were expecting a decrease of 10 percent for the half of 2009, but not the dramatic fall in sales shown by the current figures.
The ADAP president, Javier Diaz, said to La Estrella that the decrease is due to the strict terms and conditions that banks are imposing on customers requesting car loans.
According to ADAP, 65 percent of all vehicles sold in Panama are financed by banks or similar financial institutions.
Panamanian banks have been traditionally cautious when it comes to lending money with many requiring that a person be employed for at least two years before a loan can be granted. The automakers most affected by the slowdown in sales are Toyota (40 percent down), Nissan (22 percent down) and Hyundai (four percent down).