Paris - French auto giant PSA Peugeot Citroen said that
global sales plunged by 16.5% in 2012 owing to contracting demand in
debt-crippled southern Europe and the suspension of its activities in Iran, in
a statement on Wednesday.
"PSA Peugeot Citroen recorded worldwide unit sales of 2
820 000 assembled vehicles, down 8.8%. Together, sales of assembled vehicles
and CKD (completely knocked down) units totalled 2 965 000, down 16.5%,"
the group said.
Peugeot Citroen, Europe's second-biggest carmaker, said the
economic crisis in Europe explained its poor results.
"Southern Europe, where PSA Peugeot Citroen has a
particularly large presence, was hit hardest, with the market down 13.3% in
France, 14.9% in Spain and 20.9% in Italy," it said.
Its decision to pull out of Iran early last year also
affected group results.
"The decision to suspend sales of CKD units in Iran as
from February in compliance with international regulations, which made it
impossible to finance Iran-bound sales due to tighter international sanctions,
also impacted group sales in 2012," PSA said.
The carmaker had sold 457 900 CKD units in Iran in 2011.
Peugeot's decision to suspend business in Iran was to comply
with international sanctions against the Islamic republic over its nuclear
France also came under intense pressure from Washington
lobbies to shut down its thriving operations in Iran after US auto giant
General Motors acquired a 7.0% shareholding in PSA.
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