New vehicle registrations down 63%

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The serious downturn in the motor industry continues as the official figures released by the Society of the Irish Motor Industry

(SIMI) for new cars registered in February 2009 which at 8,950 units, are down 62.89% on February 2008 (24,119).  The year to date figure, at 24,835 is back 65.30% on the figure to end of February 2008 (71,569).

The stark figures are a continuation of the very poor registration levels that were experienced in January.  These figures are no surprise and if continued for the rest of the year this level of registrations would prove disastrous. SIMI has been pressing Government to take immediate action to help save jobs and protect Government revenue.

Commenting on these figures SIMI Director General, Alan Nolan said; “A lot has been said about the need for everyone to contribute and pull together. We have been prepared to do our share even through the huge difficulties we have suffered as a result of the VRT and Road Tax changes last year.  We know the state of the Country’s Finances and understand that damaging the prospects of stability will not serve any of us well. As a result all of SIMI’s proposals are self financing while the Scrappage Scheme proposal will actually increase State revenues.”

It is clear that Government is aware of the depth of our problems and SIMI has outlined what needs to be done but the situation is extremely urgent. It really is crucial – something must be done now. Every single day that goes by is an opportunity lost with another Dealership and perhaps a hundred jobs gone.  Every single day’s delay is a day closer to a point where it will no longer be possible to make a positive impact on the situation and thousands of jobs will have been lost.

Commenting on this Alan Nolan said; “As we get closer to the day on which the Clawback VAT falls due to be paid, it is crucial that this VAT situation is resolved as thousands of Motor Industry jobs are literally on the line because of this burden.”

Light Commercial Vehicle registrations for February 2009 (838) are down 83.26% on the same period last year (5,007), the year to date figure at 2,485 is 81.59% down on the first two months of last year (13,499). Heavy Vehicle registrations are down 79.33% (111) compared to February 2008 (537) while they are down 72.06% (378) for the year to date compared to the same period in 2008 (1,353).