China’s 2022 auto sales rise 9.5% but growth weakening

Jan 11, 2023, 9:54 AM | Updated: Jan 12, 2023, 12:27 am
FILE - A visitor inspects the Infiniti QX55 during the Shanghai Auto Show in Shanghai on Wednesday,...

FILE - A visitor inspects the Infiniti QX55 during the Shanghai Auto Show in Shanghai on Wednesday, April 21, 2021. China’s auto sales rose 9.5% in 2022 as electric vehicle purchases nearly doubled, but demand in the global industry’s biggest market slumped in December, foreshadowing weaker growth this year, a trade group reported Thursday, Jan. 12, 2023. (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan, File)

(AP Photo/Ng Han Guan, File)

BEIJING (AP) — China’s auto sales rose 9.5% last year as electric vehicle purchases nearly doubled, but demand in the global industry’s biggest market slumped in December, foreshadowing weaker growth this year, a trade group reported Thursday.

Sales of SUVs, sedans and minivans rose to 23.6 million, according to the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers. Total vehicle sales, including trucks and buses, edged up 2.1% to 26.9 million.

In December, sales fell 6.7% from a year earlier to 2.3 million as consumer spending weakened under pressure from anti-virus restrictions that kept millions of people at home and an economic slowdown caused by tighter controls on corporate debt. Total vehicle sales fell 8.4% to 2.6 million.

CAAC forecast steady growth this year but said annual sales might rise only 3%.

The economy is rebounding following the ruling Communist Party’s surprise decision to lift anti-virus controls on travel and business. But the recovery is expected to be rocky as China copes with a surge in infections and weakening U.S. and European demand for its exports.

Global automakers are looking to China to propel sales growth at a time when U.S. and European demand is flat to declining.

The World Bank and private sector forecasters have cut their outlooks for China’s economic growth last year to as low as below 3%. The International Monetary Fund expects a recovery to 4.4% this year, but that still would be among the lowest levels of the past three decades.

Sales of gasoline-electric hybrids and pure electric vehicles rose 93.4% in 2022 to 6.9 million, according to CAAC. Sales of pure electrics were up 81.6% at 5.4 million vehicles while those of hybrids soared 160% to 1.5 million.

Sales of gasoline- and diesel-powered vehicles tumbled 25.3% in December to 1.3 million.

China accounts for more than half of global EV sales. The ruling party subsidized the industry’s launch to get an early lead in an emerging technology but has since shifted the financial burden to automakers by imposing sales quotas. They are investing billions of dollars in developing models that Chinese drivers will want to buy without subsidies and have formed partnerships to share the soaring costs.

EVs made up 25.6% of vehicle sales, CAAC said.

China’s annual auto sales peaked in 2017 at 24.7 million but collapsed in 2020 to 20.2 million after dealerships closed as part of efforts to contain COVID-19. They have gradually recovered since then.

Sales of Chinese brands grew 22.8% in 2022 to 11.8 million, accounting for 49.9% of the market, according to CAAC. Sales rose 12.7% in December from a year earlier to 1.3 million.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

FILE - Zoubin Ghahramani, vice president of research at Google, speaks at the Google AI@ event on W...
Associated Press

Google has the next move as Microsoft embraces OpenAI buzz

Before the artificial intelligence tool ChatGPT was unleashed into the world, the novelist Robin Sloan was testing a similar AI writing assistant built by researchers at Google.
9 hours ago
budgets...
Associated Press

Group’s lawsuit seeks to void Washington transportation law

A conservative legal advocacy organization is suing to halt the nearly $17 billion transportation funding bill passed by the Washington Legislature and signed by Gov. Jay Inslee last year.
9 hours ago
Finland's Prime Minister Sanna Marin, left, and Sweden's Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson attend a jo...
Associated Press

Nordic PMs: Keep calm, we still plan to join NATO together

STOCKHOLM (AP) — In a strong show of unity, the prime ministers of Finland and Sweden on Thursday called for calm amid tensions with Turkey over their applications to become NATO members and reaffirmed their intent to have the two countries join the military alliance at the same time. A series of recent demonstrations in […]
1 day ago
Associated Press

US ambassador’s views on Hungary ‘irrelevant,’ minister says

BUDAPEST, Hungary (AP) — The Hungarian foreign minister accused the United States ambassador to Budapest on Thursday of trying to interfere in Hungary’s internal affairs, amid a growing diplomatic rift between the U.S. and the Central European country. At a news conference in Budapest, Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto lashed out at comments in Politico this […]
1 day ago
Groundhog Club handler A.J. Dereume holds Punxsutawney Phil, the weather prognosticating groundhog,...
Associated Press

Beyond Phil: Other rodents that purport to ‘predict’ weather

Rodents predicting weather trends. Why? Just as fair a Groundhog Day question, though, is this: Why not? And more importantly, why should Punxsutawney Phil always get to, well, hog the press? The spring-heralding (or spring-delaying) small animal has taken firm root in some swaths of American culture. And while Phil and his Pennsylvania ilk are […]
1 day ago
FILE - National Economic Council director Brian Deese listens as President Joe Biden speaks about e...
Associated Press

Biden’s top economic aide leaving White House

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden’s top economic adviser, Brian Deese, is leaving his post. Biden said Thursday in a statement that Deese would step down as director of the White House National Economic Council. That position had him coordinating policy across the government and negotiating with Congress on coronavirus aid, the budget, infrastructure, the […]
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

safety from crime...

As crime increases, our safety measures must too

It's easy to be accused of fearmongering regarding crime, but Seattle residents might have good reason to be concerned for their safety.
Comcast Ready for Business Fund...
Ilona Lohrey | President and CEO, GSBA

GSBA is closing the disparity gap with Ready for Business Fund

GSBA, Comcast, and other partners are working to address disparities in access to financial resources with the Ready for Business fund.
SHIBA WA...

Medicare open enrollment is here and SHIBA can help!

The SHIBA program – part of the Office of the Insurance Commissioner – is ready to help with your Medicare open enrollment decisions.
Lake Washington Windows...

Choosing Best Windows for Your Home

Lake Washington Windows and Doors is a local window dealer offering the exclusive Leak Armor installation.
Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
China’s 2022 auto sales rise 9.5% but growth weakening