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Sri Lanka commercial vehicle registrations slip in April, motor cycles up
26 May, 2014 11:48:25
May 26, 2014 (LBO) - Sri Lanka's commercial vehicle registrations continued were sharply down from a year earlier, especially trucks in April 2014, though motor cycle sales were up, an analysis by an equities research unit shows.
JB Securities quoting Sri Lanka's motor vehicle registry data said motor cycle sales rose 18 percent to 17,031 in April 2014 from a year earlier.

Two years ago in April 2012 the financing share of motor cycles was only 45.9 percent. The ratio had climbed to 62.9 percent by April 2014 as prices rose due to rupee depreciation and taxes.

It is not yet clear whether the higher purchases are a leading indicator of confidence returning to purchase decisions following the end of a balance of payments crisis in 2011/2012.

But truck sales were sharply down with mini trucks down 26 percent to 988 units, lite trucks down 26 percent to 226 and heavy trucks plunging 48 percent to 97 units.

Hand tractors were down 56 percent to 248 units and large tracktors were down 39 percent to 93.

There are anecdotal evidence of defaults especially in large trucks amid a slowdown in construction and related activity.

Three wheelers were down 18 percent to 6,772 units in April.

Motor car registrations were flat at 1,917 units, only marginally down from 1977 units a year earlier.

Among small cars (below 1,000cc) were down to 206 from 546 a year earlier. Sri Lanka's rulers tax small cars in the range of 200 percent. Indian made Maruti/Zusuki cars were holding at 209 units down from 264.

But Chinese and assembled Micro cars were down to 103 from 147 a year earlier.

In the pre-owned or reconditioned market, registrations rose to 1,270 units in April up from 1,156 helped by hybrid cars.

Toyota hybrids rose to 989 from 820 led by Aqua 376 units and Honda rose to 334 from 288, led by its Fit model.

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