Region: Driving Back After a Tough Year

Last year was a complicated one for car companies in Slovakia. The global economic downturn decreased demand for new cars and even the car-scrapping bonus and VAT-related measures failed to maintain car sales and thus production at previous years’ levels. It is already clear that aggregate car production in Slovakia last year remained below the so-far record level of almost 576,000 units manufactured in 2008. Production is estimated to have dropped by 20 percent, thereby surpassing the Europe-wide average fall of 13 percent in passenger-car production. However, it has not been the same story for all carmakers in Slovakia: PSA Peugeot Citroën Slovakia in Trnava boosted production in 2009 by almost 10 percent.

“We assess 2009 as a year of stabilisation with regards to the fact that the crisis in the automotive industry had broken as early as 2008,” Mária Nováková, the secretary general of the Automotive Industry Association of the Slovak Republic (ZAP), told The Slovak Spectator. “The first quarter of 2009 was also critical, but from the second half of the year we registered stabilisation. We expect 2010 to be at 2009’s level.”…

Read more at The Slovak Spectator.

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