The extent of the decline in April’s VFACTs was not surprising but the figures were still incredibly sobering. To put this into perspective the last time sales dipped below 40,000 units in a month was in January 1994, some 26 years ago.
There are positive signs emerging and I sincerely hope that we have now reached the bottom of this crisis. As restrictions start to ease customers will return to showrooms and hopefully consumer sentiment will improve.
To get through this period Federal and State Governments have put in place various support measures and payments from the crucial JobKeeper program should have started hitting bank accounts this week. In addition, a collective effort from Dealer staff, OEMs, finance companies, marketing partners, some landlords and others will assist Dealers to get through this unparalleled downturn.
As the states and territories start to gradually lift restrictions and allow businesses to reopen, the big question on everyone’s lips is when will the economic recovery phase of this set in. There are varying opinions from economists as to what the so-called snap back looks like and there has been much talk about a V-Shaped or a U-Shaped recovery.
While uncertainty persists, the AADA has been consulting with members to develop a list of measures which we can socialise with the Government and work towards assisting our industry to recover.
The list of measures can be found here, and include some immediate measures, such as an extension of the instant asset write-off scheme and the development of a fleet renewal scheme. Other measures relate to more structural reform such as rationalising Australia’s automotive taxation regime and the completion of the Government’s work to reform the automotive franchising landscape.
We are constantly reminding our leaders of the situation in our industry, our unique circumstances and how important it is that our industry recovers, so it can contribute to the nation’s economy and support tens of thousands of jobs which are so important to so many families in cities and country towns across Australia.