While everybody has their eyes on China and possibly India, the car market in smaller South East Asian countries is exploding right below the RADAR screen. By themselves, car sales in a country like Vietnam don’t seem to amount to much. Now, go to the trouble and add a few South East Asian countries together. The Nikkei [sub] did and notes to its amazement that the car market in Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Vietnam and Singapore jumped 21 percent in the first half year to 1.6 million units.
Now why would The Nikkei be so excited about this?
1.23 million or 77 percent of these rapidly growing sales in the balmy countries are by Japanese automakers. Taken together, the car market for the region is similar to “such emerging markets as Brazil, India and Russia,” as The Nikkei can’t help to note.
In Thailand, sales rose 40 percent in the first half to 606,523 units. Sales in Indonesia rose 28 percent to 535,263 units.