Myanmar 2020. Leader Suzuki halves its sales (-49.5%), while market loses 19.5%

Myanmar car market
The 2020 Suzuki Ignis

Myanmar auto market in 2020 falls by 19.5% as the pandemic,  lockdowns, and fall in tourism affect sales. Full-Year sales have been 15.721, while the leader Suzuki halves its sales and loses an impressive 11.4% market share.

Economic Environment

After activity took a likely severe hit in H1 amid the health crisis, the economic panorama remains bleak in H2, particularly in Q4, amid soaring Covid-19 infections.

Following September’s dive, the manufacturing PMI slid further into contractionary territory in October—marking the worst reading since April—with output and new orders declining at a record pace.

On a brighter note, on 8 November, Japan approved a low market rate loan to Myanmar worth JPY 42.8 billion (about USD 414 million) for infrastructure projects and financing businesses.

The economy is expected to grow at the slowest pace on record this year before growth picks up solidly in 2021 on the back of strengthening clothing and natural gas exports and stable agricultural production. However, ongoing political tensions and elevated uncertainty over the trajectory of the pandemic cloud the outlook.

Market Trend

The Myanmar car market has been hit in 2020 by the world-wide COVID-19 pandemic and by the consequent drop in tourism, which has impacted sales significantly.

The reduction of import fee on new vehicles and the barrier to extra ASEAN used vehicles import, gave more competitiveness to the new models and data on new vehicles registrations become almost positive, with the full year 2018 sales boomed at the all-time record of 18.500 units, sixth time more than in 2013.

The growth was driven by the fast growth of the new local industry with the availability of locally made models offered at an affordable price, with great success for Ford (Ranger and Everest) and Suzuki (Ertiga, Carry, Ciaz).

Following the recent years of rapid growth, in 2019 the market struggled for the first three quarters, but the strong demand in Q4 allowed a recovery with final figures up 5.6% at 19.537, the new all-time record.

Indeed, Full-Year sales for 2020 have been 15.721, reporting a decline of 19.5% compared to 2019.

Brand-wise, this year the leader Suzuki (-49.5%) lost an impressive 11.4% market share, followed by Toyota (-35.3%), which lost only 0.1% share. Nissan (-27.8%) remained third and gained 0.9% market share.

The most sold model in the country remains the Suzuki Ertiga with 1.963 sales (-57%), holding 12.9% share.