Ukrainians buy 8% more new automobiles in 2019

The sales of new cars went 8% up in Ukraine in 2019 compared to 2018, bringing a total of 88,500 automobiles to the country, the Ukrainian Motor Vehicle Manufacturers Association, or UkrAutoprom, reported on Jan. 2.

Renault, Toyota, Kia, Skoda, and Nissan were the top five brands in Ukraine.

At the beginning of 2019, however, the sales weren’t impressive at all — the number of new cars registered in Ukraine was 21% less than during the same period in 2018. According to the industry group, this might have been connected with reduced custom clearance fees that worked until the end of February and served as an incentive for owners to continue buying used cars from abroad in January-February.

Before the customs clearance fees were introduced in November 2018, Ukrainians drivers were legally allowed not to pay customs fees on imported cars at all if the vehicles remained registered in the EU.

The state was facing a completely uncontrolled mass of EU-registered automobiles, the owners of which practically did not pay anything to the budget. In addition, the situation was also threatening in terms of monitoring traffic safety, as it was almost impossible to hold drivers of those cars accountable.

The new rules forced everyone to start clearing foreign used cars through customs. As a result, over the period from that November to January, owners of used EU-registered cars had paid $145 million to the state budget, as they re-registered their cars.

In March 2019, over 263,000 cars still not complied with the new fiscal rules.

Most of the EU-registered cars were imported from Poland, online data aggregator Opendatabot reported in 2018. Over 110,000 cars re-registered later in Ukraine came from Poland, 51,000 came from Lithuania,  20,000 – from Germany, and 14,000 – from Bulgaria.

According to UkrAutoprom, Ukrainians started to buy more new cars by the end of 2019. In December, 10,000 new vehicles arrived on the market, an increase of 31% compared to the same month in 2018. This increase pulled up the year-long sales growth to 8% eventually.


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