Thai April car sales jump 25.2 pct y/y - federation

BANGKOK, May 23 (Reuters) - Thailand’s domestic car sales in April surged 25.2 percent to 79,206 vehicles from a year earlier, underpinned by higher investments, farm prices and model launches, the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI) said on Wednesday.

Exports of whole cars in April rose 5.29 percent year-on-year to 72,571 units, the FTI said in a statement.

Car sales during January-April jumped 15.5 percent from a year earlier, while car exports saw an increase of 4.13 percent.

The FTI recently said domestic sales might exceed its target of 900,000 cars this year, up from 871,650 units sold last year.

Car sales rebounded 13.4 percent in 2017 after four years of contraction following the end of a government car subsidy scheme in 2012, when sales hit a record.

Exports will touch 1.1 million cars this year following the shipment of 1.14 million units last year, the FTI estimated.

Thailand is a regional vehicle production and export base for the world’s top automobile manufacturers. The auto industry accounts for about 12 percent of Southeast Asia’s second-largest economy.

Reporting by Orathai Sriring, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips