Chinese cars' shares in Vietnam's market increases by 6 times

Although cars from Thailand and Indonesia still account for a large proportion in Vietnam's market, the volume of cars imported from China in the first quarter increased six times over the same period in 2020.
April 19, 2021 | 11:06
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Chinese cars' shares in Vietnam's market increases by 6 times
Although cars from Thailand and Indonesia still account for a large proportion of Vietnam's market, the volume of cars imported from China in the first quarter increased six times over the same period in 2020. (Photo: VN Express)

According to the General Department of Customs, in the first quarter of 2021, CBU cars imported from the Chinese market increased significantly, reaching 3,900 units, 6 times higher than figures in the same period last year, which was 655. Over the past two years, Chinese cars have gained much more popularity in the Vietnamese market. In January 2021, the number of cars imported from China was even slightly higher than those from Indonesia.

Chinese car products are also varied in manufacturers, from Beijing, Brilliance, to BAIC, which are often imported through small private imports. That is excluded MG, a British car brand but owned by SAIC (China), and distributed in Vietnam by Tan Chong. This brand's products were once imported directly from China but then switched to Thailand from November 2020.

However, in terms of absolute quantity, CBU cars imported to Vietnam in the first quarter of this year still mainly originated from Thailand and Indonesia, accounting for 80% of the country's total imports. In which, 19,300 units, up 56% compared to the same period in 2020, comes from Thailand and 8,950 units, down 26%, from Indonesia.

Chinese cars' shares in Vietnam's market increases by 6 times
According to the Vietnam Automobile Manufacturers Association (VAMA), the demand for imported cars has also increased sharply. For the whole first quarter of the year, sales of domestically assembled vehicles increased by 24% while imported cars increased by 55%. (Photo: VN Express)

Since 2018, when the ASEAN Trade in Goods Agreement (ATIGA) takes effect, Thai and Indonesian cars have always topped the imported car market into Vietnam thanks to the 0% preferential tax. Meanwhile, cars from China usually run third, though their output is much lower than these mentioned two countries due to Chinese car brands' less popularity in Vietnam and high import taxes, which is 47-70%.

In March this year, the total number of vehicles of all kinds imported to Vietnam reached 16,980 units, a sharp increase of 69.1% compared to February. Since the beginning of the year, Vietnam has imported 35,360 vehicles, 31.1% higher compared with the same period of 2020, of which 92% are cars and trucks.

According to the Vietnam Automobile Manufacturers Association (VAMA), the demand for imported cars has also increased sharply. In March, while 17,140 locally assembled cars were sold, which is an increase of 99% compared to February, the volume of imported complete cars sold was 13,795, an increase of 177%. For the whole first quarter of the year, sales of domestically assembled vehicles increased by 24% while imported cars increased by 55%.

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Valerie Mai

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