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Global uncertainties to hit world car markets

The global car market will not remain unfazed by the current threats stemming from regional crises, a fresh German study has suggested. It sees worldwide sales dropping significantly in the months ahead.

In its latest market outlook published Monday,

Germany's CAR Center Automotive Research

predicted global vehicle sales will grow by only 1 percent in the second half of this year, down from a 5-percent surge in the first six months.

The study cited the protracted Ukraine conflict as a major uncertainty, but also mentioned continuing economic problems in some European nations, including France and Italy.

CAR added that the market situation in a number of Latin American nations and Japan was not very promising either.

Optimistic outlook for Germany

For the whole of 2014, the research center reckoned with the sale of 73 million units worldwide, with more than 10 million cars to be shifted in China alone, accounting for more than 18 percent of global sales.

Because of a stronger domestic market, Germany is expected to see sales of 3 million units, marking a 2-percent increase from 2013 levels.

The survey noted auto makers are getting increasingly dependent on China, with every fourth car to be sold there by the end of 2014. It also added that there are risks involved. Just recently, the Asian country forced foreign car makers to drastically reduce prices for spare parts.

"Profit margins for auto makers will become smaller not least due to protectionist measures," CAR chief Ferdinand Dudenhöffer said in a statement.

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