Car exports hit by spare parts crisis
The shortage reduced March shipments by 10.2%
Thailand’s car exports in March fell 10.2% year-on-year to 93,840 units due to a shortage of semiconductors and auto parts, which could become even scarcer in the wake of the Russian-Russian war. Ukrainian, according to the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI).
The shortage has affected exports of many car models to Australian, European and Asian markets, said Surapong Paisitpatanapong, vice president and spokesperson for the FTI automobile club.
The Covid-19 lockdown in Shanghai has been one of the factors behind the shortage of auto parts, ultimately affecting global automotive industry supply chains.
“There are two key factories there that supply auto parts to Thailand and global markets. We expect the pandemic situation to improve soon,” Surapong said.
The federation is also closely monitoring the impact of the Russian-Ukrainian war on global automakers in Thailand, as the unresolved conflict could deal another blow to the supply of raw materials needed to assemble cars.
According to the FTI club, car exports from January to March this year fell 5.81 percent year-on-year to 243,124 units, with the export value increasing slightly by 0.86 percent to 144.16 billion baht.
However, compared to February, the number of car exports in March increased by around 18%.
National car sales in March rose 9.1% year-on-year to 87,245 units, and 17.12% from February.
From January to March, car sales in the country rose 19 percent year-on-year to 231,189 units.
“The increases have been attributed to a range of factors, from the state’s easing of measures against Covid-19, to the electric vehicle [EV] incentive program to boost electric vehicle sales and car reservations at the Bangkok International Motor Show,” Mr. Surapong said.
The 12-day car event ended on April 3.
In March, car manufacturing in Thailand rose 6.25% year-on-year to 172,671 units, the club said.
From January to March, auto production rose 3.06% year-on-year to 480,078 units.
“About 32 percent was produced to meet higher demand during the Bangkok International Motor Show and the Songkran holiday,” Surapong said.