Vehicle sales in the Philippines for October 2013, as reported by the Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines (CAMPI) and the Truck Manufacturers Association (TMA), came in at 16,800 units, an increase of 11.4% y-o-y. Sales were at an all-time monthly high, playing out our bullish view on the market.
As we have said for some time, the robust consumer story in the Philippines continues to propel passenger car sales ( see 'Car Sales Pull Away On Consumer Strength', September 18). While October sales in both the passenger car and consumer vehicle (CV) segment benefited from the introduction of new brands and models, the car segment handily extended its outperformance, with sales growing 36.2%, to 6,128 units versus about 1.0% growth in CV sales, to 10,672 units.
While it is plausible that the recent typhoon that struck parts of the Philippines could derail the positive consumer sentiment, our Country Risk team believes that for now the economic impact of the natural disaster will be minimal as the main economic centres in the country were largely spared from the typhoon ( see 'Yolanda Devastation Underscores Vulnerability ', November 12).
As such, we see car sales having a strong finish for the full year and have upgraded our 2013 passenger car sales growth forecast to 22.5%, to 59,200 units, from 16.5% previously. On the other hand, CV sales are in line to meet our 2013 growth forecast of 11.0%, with sales for the first 10 months of the year up 11.3% y-o-y, to 98,694 units. After maintaining our CV sales forecast, the upward revision in passenger car sales has brought our 2013 total vehicle sales growth forecast to 14.5%, to 179,400 units, from 12.7% previously.
One factor, which could be responsible for the underperformance of CV sales, is the slow progress of the government's highly touted public-private partnership (PPP) programme ( see 'PPP Programme Unlikely To Be Completed In Full', September 4). As our Infrastructure team notes, a number of...