MUNICH -- Russias auto lobby group wants the government to launch a scrapping incentive scheme to help stop the collapse of new-car sales.
The call for help comes after Russia reported a sales decline of 50 percent or more for the third consecutive month.
June sales were down 55.6 percent to 118,579 units.
In the first half, sales of new cars fell 48.6 percent to 763,926 units. (Click on chart, below right)
We think that the Russian government should seriously consider the option of introducing a scrappage premium program," Martin Jahn, vice chairman of the Association of European Businesses Automobile Manufacturers Committee, said in a statement last week.
Government scrapping plans in Europes major markets have led to a sales surge in Germany as well as rebounds in Spain and the U.K.
In Germany, a car buyer gets 2,500 euros (about $3,470) for trading in a car that is at least nine years old and replacing it with a new model. The result has been that new-car sales in the first half rose to a record of nearly 2.06 million units, a gain of 26 percent, according to the German car importers association (VDIK).
Russia car sales need a boost as consumers spend less as job losses and salary cuts rise during Russia's first recession in a decade. Making matter worse is that banks are reluctant to give out car loans.
The Russian government already has taken steps to help re-start car sales such as subsidizing loans to new-car buyers.
So far the programs have not stopped the sharp decline.
Said Jahn: "The results of the first half of 2009 clearly show that the Russian automotive market needs strong and multilateral support from the state.