South Korea takes record share of global car industry
SEOUL // South Korea maintained its status as the world's fifth largest automobile producer in terms of domestically produced vehicles, while it saw its share of the global car market rise to a record high last year, data shows. A statement from the Korea Automotive Manufacturers Association said that despite the recession hitting production in other countries, the carmaker manufactured 3.5 million vehicles in the country last year, or 5.7 per cent of the 61.295 million worldwide total. It said only China and India produced more cars last year, which saw their global car market share grow by 48 per cent and 13 per cent respectively. "The depreciation of the local currency and the tax break for replacing old cars with new ones eased the impact of the global crisis on the demand for Korean cars," the JoongAng Daily quoted Ku Hee-Cheol, an official at the association, as citing the reason for the growth. "Besides the currency effect, Korea's use of world-class technology in making small and midsized cars also seems to have contributed," he said.