BEIJING – China continued to report sluggish sales of automobiles in August, while the decline in car output narrowed, industry data showed Wednesday.
The country sold a total of 1.958 million vehicles last month, down 6.9 percent year on year, data from the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM) showed.
In August, the country produced 1.991 million cars, down 0.5 percent year on year, narrowing from an 11.9-percent decline in July, CAAM data showed.
Both sales and production rebounded on a monthly basis, up 8 percent and 10.3 percent, respectively, as compared with July.
“While we did not see sharp declines in car sales and production in August, downward pressure on the industry still looms,” the CAAM said in a statement.
In August, the number of new energy vehicles (NEV) sold dropped 15.8 percent year on year to 85,000.
The slowdown in NEV sales was partly due to a cut in government subsidies for NEV purchases, said the CAAM.
After a three-month transition period ended on June 25, local governments have stopped subsidizing purchases of NEVs other than new energy buses and fuel cell vehicles.
The country has vowed various measures to boost auto consumption. A key document published by the State Council earlier this month has suggested local authorities ease restrictions on car purchases to support auto sales.
As detailed measures are expected to be rolled out soon, downward pressure on the industry is likely to be eased, said Chen Shihua, assistant to the secretary-general of the CAAM.