GM: China Will Lead The World For A Long Time

Bertel Schmitt
by Bertel Schmitt

China will lead the U.S. as the world’s biggest auto market for a “long time,” (if not forever.) This assessment doesn’t come from the Chinese propaganda machine. Nick Reilly, GM’s head of international operations, thinks China is too far ahead of the U.S. and demand will grow next year, Bloomberg reports.

Reilly sees vehicle demand in China increase to more than 13 million units next year from about 12.5 million in 2009. “I don’t see the U.S. being anywhere near that,” Reilly said.

China’s car sales have risen more than 35 percent for six straight months, including a 90 percent jump in August. GM doubled its September sales in China to 181,148 vehicles. GM sold 1.29 million units in the first nine months of this year, more than its tally for all of 2008.

Meanwhile, in response to public concerns about the rapidly growing Chinese auto output, China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) said that the country’s car industry is not overheating, Gasgoo reports.

In view of China’s a large population, China’s total auto output is really not very high, said Zhang Xiangmu, director of MIIT’s equipment manufacturing industries division. “In terms of total vehicles produced and sold, China’s figure is not too high compared to the United States, Europe and Japan.”

He added that this year’s growth in sales can be attributed to the tax cuts for buying low-emission vehicles. The government’s stimulus measures to promote auto sales in rural areas also play an important role.

The tax cuts are scheduled to expire by end of December, but are highly expected to be extended to next year. The MIIT statement is an indicator in that direction.

Bertel Schmitt
Bertel Schmitt

Bertel Schmitt comes back to journalism after taking a 35 year break in advertising and marketing. He ran and owned advertising agencies in Duesseldorf, Germany, and New York City. Volkswagen A.G. was Bertel's most important corporate account. Schmitt's advertising and marketing career touched many corners of the industry with a special focus on automotive products and services. Since 2004, he lives in Japan and China with his wife <a href=""> Tomoko </a>. Bertel Schmitt is a founding board member of the <a href=""> Offshore Super Series </a>, an American offshore powerboat racing organization. He is co-owner of the racing team Typhoon.

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  • CommanderFish CommanderFish on Oct 29, 2009

    ......And that's nothing to be concerned about. China has the largest population of any single country on this planet. It only makes sense that it's the largest car market, as well.

  • Ott Ott on Oct 29, 2009

    She looks like a lady on the street but a freak in the bed.

  • YZS YZS on Oct 29, 2009

    Is GM being the broken clock or is the future of China doomed? Because GM is usually so, very, wrong.

  • 05gt 05gt on Oct 29, 2009

    Flashpoint, Afganistan doesnt have oil, and we get ours mainly from Saudi Arabia. I do agree we need to end our American Empire however you may critcize Bush all you want but I have not heard anything from the new administration about pulling out of Iraq