Sun, 24 Oct 2010

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - PT Astra International said the automotive industry would remain its backbone while implementing a plan to expand into three other sectors.

"We will not leave the automotive industry as it is our backbone," the company`s president director, Prijono Sugiarto, said here on Saturday.

Astra plans to expand its operations by also engaging in heavy-duty mining equipment, agribusiness and infrastructure development.

Prijono said its automotive industry accounted for 55 percent of Astra`s overall income.

However, Astra also wished to operate in other sectors such as heavy-duty mining equipment industry, agribusiness and infrastrucutre development.

"We already built the Tangerang-Merak, Kinciran-Serpong toll roads and a drinking water project in cooperation with Paljaya," he said.

He said he hoped other sectors besides automotive that the company would focus would be able to grow.

Astra has so far held the biggest market share of cars in the ASEAN region and of motorcycles in the country.

He said this year was the right time for Astra to grow despite a little decline in sales recently due to less working days caused by holidays.

"We believe the target will not be disappointing for October-December as demand for motor vehicles, heavy equipment and CPO is increasing," he said.

He said total demand for cars in the country reached 700,000 to 740,000 units and Astra`s market share in the segment reached 40 percent.

Demand for motorcycles meanwhile reaches 7.2 million with Astra controlling 47 percent of the market, heavy equipment 12,000 units with Astra taking 46 percent of the market.

"Palmoil production is expected to be the same as last year recording at 1,080,000 tons this year," he said.(*)