Belgium's auto sector expects 20% drop in sales in 2020

Belgium's auto sector expects 20% drop in sales in 2020
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Belgium’s automobile sector expects a turnover loss of over 20% this year as a result of the crisis linked to the novel Coronavirus (Covid-19).

“However, we expect a recovery from Monday onward,” thanks to the reopening of garages and dealerships, the federation of the automobile and related sectors, Traxio, said on Friday.

About 10,000 businesses in the sector are preparing to reopen their garages and showrooms to customers next week, as lockdown measures are relaxed in Belgium.

"We have reached a sector-wide agreement that describes the process to be followed to guarantee hygiene and social distancing between clients, suppliers and employees,” Traxio Spokesperson Filip Rylant said. “We expect less social contact everywhere, so also in the showroom,” he added. “Customers will, however, continue to enjoy a personal, tailored approach.”

Visits will be by appointment and some dealers are already fully booked for the next few days.

The automobile sector had been awaiting the reopening with impatience since businesses have incurred heavy losses. “The lockdown has been catastrophic for the automobile sector,” Traxio noted.

“Each week of closure means 3.7 billion euros in lost turnover,” which represents a loss of about 50% to 70% of gross income during the weeks of confinement, Traxio estimated.

The Brussels Times

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