Auto sales in China rose in February for the first time in four months in response to retail tax cuts on small cars and the earlier Lunar New Year holiday, Bloomberg reported. Sales of passenger cars, buses and trucks increased 25% year-on-year to 827,600, according to the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers. Sales for the first two months of 2009 rose 2.7% to 1.56 million, extending China’s lead over the US as the world’s largest auto market this year. US car sales fell 39% to 1.35 million over the same period. In addition to the tax cuts, Beijing plans to subsidize vehicle purchases in rural areas. Due to this and other stimulus policies, General Motors has upgraded it growth projection for China’s auto market this year from 3% to 5-10%.
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