China’s auto market, the world’s biggest, will gradually recover and remain stable for a long period despite short-term pressure from the coronavirus epidemic, officials said on Thursday, reported Reuters.
The statement came as executives from Mercedes-Benz and Volkswagen said demand is rebounding in China after restrictions on social life were eased and dealerships reopened.
China’s auto sales dropped 79% from a year earlier in February due to the epidemic. However, the situation was temporary and didn’t affect long-term trends in the industry, Cai Ronghua, a senior official at National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), told a news conference.
He noted the broader impact of any further downturn in the sector. “If auto production and sales continue to decline, it will not only affect the industry itself, but also affect the resumption of production in other industries, and may even affect the smooth operation of the entire economy,” Cai said, adding auto production had not so far been affected by global auto parts supply disruption.