Kingdom imports "less" cars, and "more " food and construction materials until May
Construction materials rises by 35% while food by 22%
Containers in the area of King Abdul Aziz Port in Dammam
A decline in the imported cars in the Kingdom during the first five months of this year by 5.7%, imports fell by 42 thousand cars from the same period last year, at a time of increase in the imports of food and construction materials.
The construction boom in the kingdom resulted in an increase of construction materials imports by 35% over the same period last year, amounting to 3.89 million goods clearance.
Furthermore; the demand on food rose by 22% as figures showed the Saudi Ports during the five months of this year.The number of unloaded goods of cars amounted to 701.459 thousand cars over the same period last year, which amounts to 743 519 thousand cars.
As explained by the Head of the automotive Committee in the Eastern Chamber, Hani Al-Afaleq the decline of imports in the Kingdom due to two reasons; first is the economic slowdown that hit the global markets and its impact on potential purchasers; which is considered the main reason, besides the decision of the Customs Department by identifying five years period for cars and ten years for trucks allowed to be imported to the Kingdom which contributed to this decline.
Al-Afaleq added that the demand by Saudi consumers to buy cars in the Kingdom has declined over the previous year; this is due to economic conditions in the Kingdom and the high prices for other products.
According to data from the central commercial indicating that banks funding have increased given to the private sector to import cars increased up to 6.94 billion riyals, 11% during the first three months of this year compared to last three months of last year 2009.
With regard to the decline in the euro currency and sovereign debt crisis of the European Union and this impact on prices of imported cars from there, "Al-Afaleq said: "the imported cars from the EU and to the Kingdom does not exceed 20% of the total vehicles imported to the Kingdom of the world, where Japan is the larger total of car imports followed by Korea and then USA.
Adding that the decline in the car prices of the European Union will be limited or excluded in facing the rise in oil prices and materials that will affect the global industry.
Above all; Al-Afaleq pointed out that the Saudi market which represents 60% of the other Gulf markets combined with each other; as the kingdom imports about 500 thousand cars a year on average.