UPDATE 1-Russian auto sales fell 4 pct in November - AEB
MOSCOW Dec 9 (Reuters) - Russian car sales fell for a ninth straight month in November, down 4 percent on the year, a lobby group for the industry said on Monday, although the decline was an improvement on the 8 percent drop recorded in October.
Sales of Russian cars have fallen in 2013 as people hold back on large purchases in a faltering economy.
"No question, the total industry is still declining, albeit at a slower pace," said Joerg Schreiber, Chairman of the Association of European Businesses (AEB) Automobile Manufacturers Committee.
The AEB said 231,982 vehicles were sold last month. Sales of new cars and light commercial vehicles declined 6 percent in January-November overall compared with the same time last year.
Schreiber said a long-awaited flattening of year-on-year sales numbers had yet to happen.
"We hope December will show progress in this direction, and deliver a decent close to an otherwise difficult year, " he said.
Schreiber last week forecast that Russian car sales may end the year down 6 percent but will likely stabilise in 2014. It will publish its official forecast for 2014 in January.
The AEB in June cut its sales prediction for 2013 following months of falling sales.
Western carmakers including General Motors, Ford , Renault and Fiat have invested heavily in Russia.
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