CARACAS, Venezuela - Car sales in Venezuela fell by 47 percent in April compared with a year ago, the Venezuelan Automobile Chamber (CAVENEZ) reported on Wednesday.
A total of 4,269 cars were sold last month compared with 8,034 in April of 2002. March auto sales in the world's fifth largest oil exporter totaled 4,664.
Sales during the first four months of 2003 fell 70 percent to 17,145 compared with 56,328 during the January to April period in 2002.
Car sales have dropped as Venezuela has struggled with a deep recession and political instability. A two-month general strike in December and January battered sales further.
The companies affiliated with CAVENEZ are DaimlerChrysler AG's DaimlerChrysler de Venezuela, Fiat SpA's Fiat Automobiles, Fiat affiliate IVECO Venezuela, Ford Motor Co., General Motors' General Motors de Venezuela, Mitsubishi Motors Corp.'s MMC Automotriz and Toyota Motor Corp.'s Toyota de Venezuela.
The figures represent the total vehicle sales in Venezuela, and also include car models made by non-members of CAVENEZ, suchas Mazda Motor Corp. and Volkswagen AG.