Car imports crawl into Vietnam in Q1: report

By Ngoc Tuan   April 13, 2018 | 12:50 am PT
Car imports crawl into Vietnam in Q1: report
A car being manufactured by workers in a factory. Photo by AFP
Foreign firms are trying to get past the red tape laid down by Vietnam's government 

Vietnam's car imports in the first quarter fell six times compared to the same time last year, according to authorities.

Only 4,217 new imported cars entered the country in the first quarter, accounting for 15.9 percent of the 26,366 cars imported in the first three months of 2017, according to the General Department of Vietnam Customs.

Car importers said that the slowdown was due to a decree issued by the government at the beginning of the year that requires importers to provide valid vehicle type approval certificates issued by authorities from the countries of origin, along with quality control and assurance certificates.

As a result, importers in Vietnam do not have enough cars to meet the demand. Having sold its last 38 Toyota Fortuners at the end of January, Toyota Vietnam said it is waiting for more cars to be manufactured, which won’t be imported until June at the earliest.

Some companies have actually managed to get through the difficulties. Ford imported a large shipment before the decree came into effect, and Honda was the first brand to complete the documents necessary to import over 2,000 cars in early March.

Despite the bleak outlook for car imports in the first quarter, assembled cars have increased in sales by 8 percent compared to the same period last year.

Experts believe that it will take months before the car import market stabilizes. 

go to top