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Over 1m passenger automobile sold in China in February

1.09 million passenger automobiles (including microvans) were sold in China last month, Caijing reported today, quoting statistics from the China Passenger Car Association. According to CPCA General Secretary Rao Da, the strong monthly sales performance, which was 22.3 percent higher than last February, was due to the fact that this February had 21 working days. However, he pointed out that cumulative passenger automobile sales in the first two months of the year fell 1.4 percent.

Not counting microvans, passenger automobile sales in February totaled 898,400 units, 27.7 percent more than the amount sold last February. However, that result was 8.5 percent lower than January's figure. The relatively early occurrence of the Spring Festival holiday this year has been cited as a key cause behind lackluster sales in January and February, which combined totaled 1.88 million units.

The market for microvans has yet to recover, with combined January and February sales 12.9 percent less than 2011.

Mr. Rao remarked that production figures in February far exceeded end user sales, allowing inventories to increase once again. 2.31 million passenger automobile were manufactured during the month, nearly 50,000 units higher than sales in the first two months of the year.

The CPCA predicts that increasing fuel prices in March will put a lot of pressure on potential consumers, resulting in negative sales growth.