Coronavirus having 'devastating' impact as car sales fall 96%

Coronavirus having 'devastating' impact as car sales fall 96%

April car sales fell 96% year-on-year, new figures have revealed.

The Society of the Irish Motor Industry have said that just 344 new cars were registered last month - compared to 8,904 12 months ago.

As the Covid-19 crisis impacts the industry, SIMI figures reveal that registrations during the year to date are down by over 30%.

Registrations for light commercials vehicles (LCV) and heavy goods vehicles (HGV) are also down significantly.

Brian Cooke, SIMI Director-General has said that the cancelling of rates bills and reductions in Vat and VRT will be needed to kick-start the industry after the crisis ends.

“Like many other sectors of the economy, Covid-19 is having a devastating impact on the Irish Motor Industry," said he said.

"With the July registration period approaching, the motor industry will be well placed to help start activity in the Irish economy.

"This has the potential to protect the nearly 50,000 people in employment in the sector, increasing government revenues, improving the safety of the cars on Irish roads, while also improving Ireland’s environmental performance by replacing old cars with new or newer cars," he added.

Additional measures such as the cancelling of rates bills, and reductions in VAT and VRT would be very helpful as would the immediate re-opening of NCT and commercial vehicle test centres.

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