September 11, 2019 / 6:20 AM / a month ago

China auto sales fall 6.9% in August, 14th month of decline

BEIJING/SHANGHAI, Sept 11 (Reuters) - Auto sales in China fell for a 14th consecutive month in August, with the number of new energy vehicles (NEVs) sold contracting for the second month in a row, data from the country’s biggest auto industry association showed.

Total auto sales fell 6.9% from the same month a year earlier, the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM) said on Wednesday.

That followed declines of 4.3% in July and 9.6% in June, as well as the first annual contraction last year since the 1990s against a backdrop of slowing economic growth and a crippling trade war with the United States.

Sales of new energy vehicles (NEVs) fell 15.8% in August, CAAM said, following a 4.7% fall in July - their first decline since January 2017. NEV sales jumped almost 62% last year even as the broader auto market contracted.

NEVs include plug-in hybrids, battery-only electric vehicles and those powered by hydrogen fuel cells.

China has been a keen supporter of NEVs and has implemented sales quota requirements for automakers. (Reporting by Yilei Sun in Beijing and Brenda Goh in Shanghai; Editing by Christopher Cushing and Himani Sarkar)

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