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Car sales sharply rise in Cambodia in 2012 due to strong economic growth

Demand for brand new cars in Cambodia has remarkably increased in 2012 thanks to robust economic growth, enhanced social security and political stability, major automobile dealers said Monday.

“We sold about 800 units this year, up from 500 units last year, ”

Kong Nuon, president of Toyota Cambodia, the exclusive dealer of Japanese brand Toyota, told Xinhua in an interview.

According to Kong Nuon, the country’s new car demands are around 2,000 units a year. Currently, more than a dozen companies in Cambodia have imported brand new cars.

Those autos are imported mostly from Japan, South Korea, China, the United States, Germany and the United Kingdom, he said. “We set the target to sell about 1,000 units in 2013,” he said.

China-made Great Wall brand automobiles also saw good sales this year, said Kan Pisey, general manger of Worldwide Garage, the exclusive importer of the cars from Beijing. “We have seen a steady increase in sales since our presence here in January 2010,” he told Xinhua.”We are new, but due to our promotion and our auto’s good quality, many consumers have switched to use our cars.”

Pisey declined to disclose the number of cars the company has sold this year, citing business confidentiality. “We can say that Cambodia’s car market has ample room for growth, “he said. “We are negotiating with the Beijing-based Great Wall Automobile Manufacturer in order to build an auto assembly plant here.”

An exclusive dealer of the U.S.’Ford brand vehicle in Cambodia said that the firm saw 15 percent rise in sales in 2012. “In fact, demand was really larger than the supply this year. If we had enough cars for customers, the growth would be up by 50 percent, not by 15 percent, but we didn’t have because our manufacturers suffered spare parts shortages resulted from the impacts of a devastated earthquake in Japan and massive flooding in Thailand last year,”said Ngorn Saing, deputy general manager of RM Asia.

He attributed the high demands to good economic performance, increased foreign investors, more newly-opened companies and better living conditions of Cambodian people. “Nowadays, more Cambodian people have begun to invest their money in luxurious and modern things thanks to their improved living conditions,”he said.

Besides brand new cars, the country’s demands for the used cars are about 20,000 units per year.

The impoverished Southeast Asian nation has a population of 14. 5 million. The country’s per capita GDP was 911 U.S. dollars in 2011, up 10 percent from 830 U.S. dollars in 2010, according to the government figures.

The country’s economy is expected to grow by 7 percent to 15.6 billion U.S. dollars in 2012.

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