Import of cars in Pakistan – bad for the industry?

The budget is upon us. Import of 3 year old cars is currently allowed and that is a problem. Why? Because a car that is three year old is practically new – you get a good price for it and the cars they are making nowadays, 3 years worth of mileage is not that much. This means most cars being imported were expensive because they were ONLY 3 years old.

Now in the upcoming budget, there are considerations to extend this ’3 year limit’ to 5 years. Now you can import 5 year old cars into Pakistan, so says the budget proposition. And guess who opposes this decisions? The automobile industry of Pakistan, of course.

According to a press release, the car industry folks believe that the importers will, and I quote,

‘dump junk automobiles in the market, creating unhealthy and unfair competition for the local manufacturers

Well sire, if that is the case, let the dumping of 2003 Honda Accords and 2006 model Toyota Vitz begin! It would take some serious battering to make a five year old car ‘junk’. Like I said, the cars made in 2006 for example, would still beat the Pakistani manufactured car built in 2010 ANY DAY! This should be taken as a wake up call by the Pakistani businessmen to get their act together and start producing cars worth paying money for. They – the automobile industry – sell us cars that are high on price and low on quality, and they do it because they have the one thing any business would want – a monopoly. Why would I buy a Toyota Corolla for 1.8 Million rupees when I can import a 2002 Honda Accord CF3 for 1.3 Million? Is it really worth your money to buy a Suzuki Cultus than to buy a Toyota Vitz?

This bill, if passed, would be a win for the consumer. They would have more cars to choose from, hence forcing the automobile industry to lower their prices (you wish!!).

I wonder what someone from Honda would say to this? If the price of production of these cars is so high, then why aren’t we told about this? If the car companies here want to make exuberant profits, then why wouldn’t the consumer look elsewhere?

Stay tuned for more on this…God willing.