Portuguese car market sinks sharply in March due to COVID-19 pandemic

Xinhua News,LISBON
2020-04-02 05:36

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Portuguese car market sank 56.6 percent in March compared with the same period last year as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, registering only 12,399 vehicles, the Automobile Trade Association of Portugal (ACAP) said on Wednesday.

"After registering a 5 percent increase in the previous month, the market sank in March 2020 due to the crisis caused by the novel coronavirus," ACAP said in a press release.

ACAP noted that in March, many vehicles were registered "whose orders had been placed before the pandemic," said the report.

In the first quarter, 52,941 new vehicles were put into circulation, 24 percent less compared to the same period in 2019, ACAP said.

By category, 10,596 light vehicles were registered in March, a decrease of 57.4 percent compared with the same period of last year, while in the accumulated period of the first quarter, passenger care registrations totaled 45,282 units, down 23.8 percent from the same period of 2019.

As for heavy vehicles, which include those for passengers and goods, as well as tractors, there was a 46.6 percent drop in March compared to the same month of the previous year. The total number in the first quarter was 1,023 units, a 29.5 percent drop in the market from the same period in 2019, said the release.

According to Wednesday's bulletin of the Directorate-General of Health, the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Portugal rose to 8,251, while associated fatalities increased from 160 in 24 hours to 187.
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