Vehicle production in the Philippines grew by 20% in February, surpassing other countries in Southeast Asia as local assemblers struggled to meet the increasing demand for cars in the post-pandemic era.

Data from the Asean Automotive Federation (AAF) revealed that the Philippines produced 11,608 vehicle units in February, a 20.1% increase from the previous year. This growth rate ranked the Philippines second in terms of growth and third in volume among the six Asean economies covered in the report.

While Myanmar experienced the highest growth rate of 273.2%, it only produced 41 units. Malaysia, on the other hand, increased output by 2.8% to 65,611 units, ranking third in both growth and production volume.

Thailand, Indonesia, and Vietnam saw lower production volumes, with output declining by 19.3%, 20%, and 43.8% respectively. Despite the decline, Thailand and Indonesia remained the top two producers in the region.

The overall production in February for the six countries totaled 317,059 new vehicles, marking a 15.6% decline. Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. chief economist Michael Ricafort attributed the sustained double-digit growth in vehicle production to the economic recovery from the pandemic.

Car sales in the Philippines also grew by 23.2% to 38,072 units in February, with lower downpayment schemes and the availability of more models contributing to the growth. However, motorcycle production in the Philippines saw a 9.5% drop to 105,307 units, while overall regional output fell by 11.5% to 322,873 units.


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