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KARACHI, Oct 12: Despite reports of heavy crop and land losses by the floods and less working days last month, the overall auto sector showed a robust performance in September 2010 as compared to August 2010 and also in July-September 2010 period.

As per media reports about damage to cotton, rice, sugarcane and other minor crops, the sale of farm tractors from July to September 2010 continued to show positive growth.

Sale of Fiat and Massey Ferguson tractors grew to 1,632 and 3,194 units in September 2010 from 537 and 3,100 in August 2010.

The overall sales of these tractors rose to 13,931 during July-September 2010 as compared to 12,690 units in the same period of 2009.

Senior Executive Director Millat Tractors Sohail Bashir Rana told Dawn from Lahore that actually floods in Central and Upper Punjab had mainly devastated (Kacha Areas) instead of main crop growing areas where usage of tractors is high. This can be attributed as a main reason of maintaining a smooth pace in tractor sales.

He said production and deliveries of tractors from July to September had been expedited and even pending orders of delivery were being executed.

He, however, said the ZTBL had suspended loaning to farmers for the last two to three months which enjoyed a share of 25-30 per cent in total tractor sales but so far buying of farm machinery on cash had been moving normally.

As there is no government tractor subsidy scheme in the current fiscal year, the tractor maker had managed to sell 10,000 units under Benazir Tractor Scheme and 5,000 units under the Sindh government scheme in the last fiscal year. Out of 10,000 units under Punjab government scheme, 70 per cent of the units were sold, Sohail said.

Motorcycle and car sales enjoy over 50 per cent and 40-45 per cent market share in rural areas as country’s 60-65 per population lives in the rural areas.

After witnessing decline in August, many car and bike makers had registered recovery in sales in September.

Figures released by Pakistan Automotive Manufacturers (PAMA), however, do not provide separate rural and urban sales figures.

Total car sales in July-September 2010 (including Suzuki Bolan) rose by 12 per cent to 30,030 units as compared to 26,812 units in the same period of 2009.

In the category of 1,300cc and above, Honda Civic and City sales in September 2010 rose to 548 and 832 units as compared to 492 and 688 units in August 2010. However, sale of these cars had plunged in August 2010 as compared to July 2010.

In July-September 2010, sales of Civic and City had risen to 1,558 and 2,274 units from 1,308 and 1,955 units in the same period of 2009.

Toyota Corolla sales slightly went up to 3,070 units in September 2010 as compared to 2,901 units in August 2010 while its July 2010 sales were 4,400 units.Overall Toyota sales in July-September 2010 increased to 10,371 units as compared to 8,951 units. Suzuki Swift sales rose to 252 units in September 2010 as compared to 226 units in August 2010.

In 1,000cc segment, a total of 1,106 units of Suzuki Cultus were sold in September 2010 as compared to 1,050 units in August 2010 while Alto sales slightly fell to 1,047 in September 2010 from 1,141 units in August 2010. The overall sales of Cultus and Alto in July-September swelled to 2,860 and 2,819 units from 2,852 and 2,365 units in the corresponding period of 2009.

PAMA data showed no sales and production figures of Hyundai Santro in July-September 2010. In 800cc and below 1,000cc segment, Daihatsu Cuore sales in September 2010 declined to 323 units from 392 units in August 2010 and 421 units in July 2010, while its sales went up slightly in July-September 2010 to 1,136 from 1,119 units in the same period of 2009.

Suzuki Mehran and Bolan sales surged to 2,145 and 1,060 units in September 2010 from 1,905 and 1,000 units. In July-September 2010 a total of 5,356 and 2,910 units of Mehran and Bolan were sold as compared to 5,158 and 2,631 units in the same period of 2009.

Furqan Punjani of Topline Securities said car sales are expected to reach 154,000 units by the end of June 2011.

BIKES: Mainly Japanese made bikes dominate in the rural areas. After witnessing decline in sales in August 2010 as compared to July 2010, the sale Honda bike showed a meager growth of 41,525 units in September 2010 as compared to 40,155 units in August 2010. The cumulative sales in July-September 2010 increased to 126,701 units as compared to 105,862 units in the same period of 2009.

It seems that the maker of Yamaha bikes felt the impact of floods as its sales continued to fall from July onwards. Its September 2010 sales plunged to 8,380 units as compared to 9,588 units in August 2010 and 10,659 units in July 2010.

However, July-September 2010 sales improved to 28,627 units as compared to 28,488 units in the same period of 2009.

Suzuki bike sales surged to 1,623 units in September 2010 from 1,394 units in August 2010 while in July 2010 sales were 1,561 units. Overall Suzuki bike sales in July-September 2010 recorded increase to 4,578 units as compared to 3,800 units in the corresponding period of 2009.