Syria has been added to Perodua’s list of countries which it exports to, following the appointment of Nahas Intertrade as its sole distributor in that country.
Nahas, which signed a distributorship agreement recently, will begin selling lefthand drive 850 cc Kancils from November when the first batch of 50 units arrive. The importer took on the distributorship in view of the Syrian government’s revised policies allowing the import of passenger cars.
Next year, the company expects to import up to 500 units and by 2002, the target is 1,200 units. Perodua MD, Datuk Abdul Rahman Omar is confident that this is possible, given the success of the car in Egypt where it is presently the most popular model in the under-1000 cc class.
Nahas aims to make the Kancil the dominant model in the compact class which accounts for 30% of the Syrian passenger car market. It is optimistic that the Kancil could eventually account for up to 50% of all compact cars sold there.
This latest development is an important one for Perodua because, after October, the Kancil will no longer be exported to UK, its major market, because of new regulations that come into effect. As such, new export markets where the regulations are less stringent need to be found, especially with AFTA and the open Malaysian market just round the corner.
As for the domestic market, Datuk Abdul Rahman has emphasised that the model will continue for quite some time as demand remains strong and when the factory expansion work is completed by the middle of next year, production of Kancils will be increased.