KUALA LUMPUR – Car prices in the country have dropped 17.9 per cent for the past two years until October 2015, the Dewan Rakyat was told today.
International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed said the government remained committed to reduce car prices as pledged in the Barisan Nasional’s manifesto during the 13th general election in 2013.
“BN has promised to continue to reduce vehicle prices between 20 to 30 per cent within five years, and for the past two years, we managed to achieve an average reduction of 17.9 per cent,” he said when winding up debate on the Supply Bill 2016.
However, he did not deny that several automotive companies either did not reduce their car prices or were forced to revise them due to pressure from the weakening ringgit.
In this case, he said if the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement were signed, import duties on completely built units from the US will be reduced to zero per cent.
“In 12 years’ time, the import duties of US vehicles, currently at 30 per cent, will be gradually reduced to zero per cent.
“In addition, Japan and Australia, through free trade agreements, ratified before the TPP Agreement, will be allowed to bring in cars without paying import duties from Jan 1 next year,” he said.
Mustapa is confident that if the TPP Agreement were signed, national car companies like Proton would continue to stay competitive and change their
business strategy by producing models at more competitive prices. – BERNAMA