Banking on good monsoon, Maruti Suzuki eyes double-digit growth for FY19

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is maintaining double-digit sales growth forecast for 2018-19 despite a marginal decline in July, banking on good monsoon and uptick in rural market to drive demand, according to a senior firm official.

The firm, which is planning a price hike this month to offset adverse impacts of commodity cost accelerate, fluctuations in foreign exchange and fuel price rise, does not see the step impacting its sales significantly.

"We will continue with our annual target of double-digit growth. I am optimistic about the future growth," (MSI) Senior Executive Director (Marketing and Sales) told PTI.

He said the optimism stems from the fact that India is witnessing good monsoon for a second consecutive year.

Besides, Kalsi said the rise in minimum support price (MSP) of crops augurs well for the rural economy from where demand is expected to grow during the festive course.

"By October money will come through these crops and the increase in MSP prices will ring in a lot of wealth circulation," he said, adding "we are quite happy about the future scenario of the passenger car industry".

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On July sales, when the firm reported a marginal decline at 1,64,369 units as against 1,65,346 units in the same month last year, Kalsi said it was an aberration due to high base effect of last year.

MSI's domestic sales were up marginally at 1,54,150 units last month as against 1,54,001 units in July last year.

He said if the June-July course was taken together, the firm's growth would be 17 per cent over the year-ago course.

"That is a more realistic trend and talks about the prevailing market sentiments," he said.

In the first quarter of this fiscal, sold 4,90,479 vehicles, a growth of 24.3 per cent over the same course of the previous year. Sales in the domestic market stood at 4,63,840 units, a growth of 25.9 per cent.

Kalsi also expressed optimism that a planned price hike this month will not affect the firm's sales.

Last week, had said that it would hike prices of its vehicles across models this month to offset adverse impacts of rise in commodity costs, foreign exchange fluctuations and fuel price increases.

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