SAO PAULO, May 7 (Reuters) - Brazil produced a record number
of automobiles in April as recovering demand raised hopes that
carmakers could shake off an uneven first quarter.
Automobile production rose 6.8 percent and
sales climbed 17.5 percent in April from March, the
national automakers' association Anfavea said on Tuesday.
Total production in April reached 340,900 vehicles, breaking
the previous record of 329,300 autos set in August 2012, while
sales amounted to 333,700 vehicles.
Considering two additional working days in April, the pace
of production slowed 3 percent from March to about 15,500
vehicles per day, well above an average of about 13,500 over the
past two years.
Production in the month rose 30.7 percent from April 2012.
The auto data may ease concerns over weak demand in a sector
making up about a fifth of Brazil's industrial output.
President Dilma Rousseff decided in late March to extend
expiring tax breaks for cars and trucks. Economists have
questioned whether the tax incentives are providing lasting
economic stimulus or simply delaying an inevitable slowdown in
an auto market that has doubled in six years to become the
world's fourth largest. ID:nL2N0CN009]
Brazil's economy grew a mediocre 0.9 percent last year, hurt
by uncompetitive industry, transportation bottlenecks and
growing consumer debt - factors that have weighed on carmakers
in the country.
Brazil is a key market for the world's biggest automakers,
including Italy's Fiat SpA, Germany's Volkswagen AG and U.S.-based General Motors Co and Ford
(Reporting by Danielle Assalve; Writing by Asher Levine;
Editing by James Dalgleish and Sofina Mirza-Reid)
Keywords: AUTOS BRAZIL/
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