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S. Korea's automobile sales to inch up in H2: report
제목 없음 South Korea's automobile sales are expected to grow at a rather disappointing rate in the second half of the year on rising energy prices and an ensuing economic slowdown, a report said on Monday.

   The Korea Automotive Research Institute, an industry think tank run by Hyundai Motor Group, said in the report that sales of new automobiles will increase by a mere 1 percent from a year earlier in the next six months.

   Automobile sales in the first four months of the year rose 4.8 percent from the same period last year to some 520,000 units, according to the report.

   "The expected slowdown is due to rising oil prices and slowing economic growth that will likely offset the effect of scheduled launches of new vehicle models in the second half of the year," it said.

   The report said annual sales will rise 3.3 percent from 2010 to 1.61 million cars.

   It also said the number of new imported vehicles sold here will reach a record of over 106,000 units this year, especially with the implementation of the Korea-European Union (EU) free trade agreement at the beginning of next month, which will lower the country's import tariffs on European cars from 8 percent to 5.6 percent.

   Despite expected slower growth in the domestic market in the second half of the year, the report said production by the country's five automakers for the entire year will reach 4.6 million units, up 7.7 percent from a year earlier, with their exports soaring 11.8 percent to 3.1 million units.

Source: Yonhap News (June 13, 2011)

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