India's auto sector has witnessed a fall for the 10th straight month, as mentioned by data released by Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM). Monthly passenger vehicle and car sales recorded the steepest fall in August, said SIAM. It also highlighted the continued slowdown in the sector amid multiple assurances by the government.
As revealed in the data, passenger vehicle sales dipped 31.57 per cent year-on-year to 196,524 units in August. Passenger car sales also fell 41.09 per cent to 115,957 units.
This is the worst-ever fall for both the categories since SIAM started recording the data in 1997-98. Auto makers have been urging the government to lend a hand since demand has been sluggish. Hundreds of thousands of job cuts have also pushed the sector into a crisis mode.
Road and Transport minister Nitin Gadkari assured them that the government was working to help the sector and said he had asked the finance ministry to consider cutting taxes on petrol and diesel, as well as hybrid vehicles.
SIAM had also asked the government to cut GST rates on automobiles to 18 percent from the current 28 per cent. SIAM President Rajan Wadhera had said the industry has done everything in its power to stay afloat. Wadhera added that the industry is offering attractive deals and discounts to the customers but they can only offer limited deals. "However, the ability of the industry to provide large discounts is limited and this only highlights the need for Government to consider reducing the GST rates from 28 per cent to 18 per cent which would significantly reduce the cost of vehicles and in turn create demand," he said.