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Import numbers on the up

New and used sectors report year-on-year increases for February with Japan the key source market.
Posted on 05 March, 2024
Import numbers on the up

There were 7,491 used passenger vehicles imported into New Zealand during February, which was 1.6 per cent more than in the same month a year ago.

Last month’s total included 7,281 cars coming in from Japan, which claimed a market share of 97.2 per cent, according to the figures from Customs NZ.

Next up in February was Australia with 109 units and 1.5 per cent of the monthly total. Singapore claimed third place with 43 and was followed by the UK on 27 and the US with 21.

The overall total meant 119 more units crossed our borders last month than the 7,372 recorded in February 2023. 

However, the latest monthly figure was down 7.8 per cent from the 8,121 used cars imported in January this year.

The year-to-date tally stands at 15,612 vehicles, which is up 25.4 per cent from 12,454 at the same stage of 2023.

As for used light commercials, there were 301 imports in February – an increase of 13.6 per cent from 265 units a year ago. 

However, last month’s figure was down 17.5 cent when compared with the 365 units imported in January.

The light commercials total for the first two months of the year stands at 666, which is 239 units or 56 per cent more than the 427 seen during the same period of last year.

New imports

There were 7,739 new passenger vehicles imported in February, which represented a 21.3 per cent increase from the 6,381 units in the same month of last year. 

Last month’s figure was also up by 71.8 per cent from January when 4,504 new cars crossed our borders.

Japan was the top source of new vehicles, accounting for 3525 units, with Thailand second on 1,386. Germany, South Korea and the UK were next on the list with 842, 439 and 335 units, respectively.

The year-to-date figures of 12,243 are one per cent below the 12,366 recorded at the same stage a year ago.

For new light commercials, there were 2,762 units imported last month, which was 751 units or 37.2 per cent more than the 2,011 seen in February 2023. 

It was also 294.6 per cent higher than the 700 units brought into the country during January.

The year-to-date tally stood at 3,462 at the end of February, which was down eight per cent from the 3,764 units imported during the same period of 2023.

Overall, 19,037 vehicles, including trucks and buses, crossed our border in February, which was up from 14,204 the previous month.