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Indonesia motorcycle demands boom

09-21-2011 13:18 BJT

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Demand for motorcycles in Indonesia has skyrocketed in recent years. Honda, the world's top motorcycle maker, increased its annual output capacity in Indonesia to 4.3 million vehicles in July this year from 3.5 million at the end of 2010.

The giant motorbike maker aims to expand its share of Indonesia's big motorcycle market to 60 percent from 46 percent before the decade is up by increasing its edge over arch-rival Yamaha.

PT Astra Honda churned out over 3.5 million of these motorcycles in Indonesia last year.

But the top motorbike maker says it still can't keep up with demand.

Demand for motorcycles in Indonesia has skyrocketed in recent years.

With traffic creeping along at snail's pace during rush hour, and a haphazard public transport system, Jakarta residents have turned to motorcycles to get around.

Motorcycle taxi driver, Fauzi, says two-wheelers are now within the reach of most people.

Fauzi, a motorcycle taxi driver said, "It is very easy to get a motorcycle now. The price is getting cheaper, we can even get in without putting a down payment."

But while fierce competition between rivals Honda and Yamaha has helped drive down prices of these vehicles, motorcycle taxi company owner Nadiem Makarim says the city's notorious traffic jams are the real reason why demand is surging.

Nadiem Makarim, an owner of a motocycle taxi company said, "The problem of congestion can only be solved by motor transport that can cut through it, and motorcycles are the only one. In addition to that, it's an informal industry and one of the biggest. More people take motorcycle taxis in Jakarta than taxis."

An estimated 23,000 of these so-called Gojeks ply the capital, offering customers like Yeni Yustiana a fast and affordable option to beat jams that can bring traffic to a virtual standstill.

Yeni Yustiana, a customer said, "I take the motorbike taxi when I need to reach my destination quicker. Moreover, the price is reasonable."

Many Gojek companies also deliver shopping and groceries.

Steady economic expansion, rising income, and the near-complete lack of a public transport system have led to a 40 percent jump in motorcycle sales in the past five years.

7.4 million were sold last year (2010), making Indonesia the world's third-biggest two-wheeler market.

Astra Honda president Yusuke Hori expects demand to stay strong, and is forecasting 20 percent jump in 2011 sales.

Yusuke Hori, president director of Astra Honda Motor said, "From January to August of this year, the total motorcycle market grew nine percent from the year earlier. Honda's sales of motorcycles grew 19 percent to 2.8 million, and for the full 2011, we are forecasting sales of 4.3 million motorcycles for us."

All this will come at a cost - the Jakarta Transportation Council estimates that jams cost around $1.5 billion in lost economic activity each year, and could rise to over $7 billion by 2020.

Editor:Li Wanran |Source: CNTV.CN

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