Business / Corporate

Japan's Toyota Tsusho to run Myanmar's first car auction

Nna/kyodo

Toyota Tsusho Corp., the Toyota Motor Corp. group’s trading arm, will hold Myanmar’s first car auction later this month with local startup Rebbiz Co., with the aim of building a marketplace for used car transactions.

T.T.A.S. Co., the official local dealership of Toyota Motor, has said they will host the first such auction in Yangon on March 16 and 17, and that they plan to sell more than 200 cars. The firm is also the operator of CarsDB, Myanmar’s largest online automobile market.

Cars expected to be sold at the auction include Toyota, Ford, Mitsubishi, Mazda, Chevrolet and Land Rover models, of which 80 to 90 percent are used vehicles, the partners said at a recent news conference in Yangon.

Automobile imports to the Southeast Asian nation have grown since 2011, when decadeslong military-junta control was replaced by civilian rule.

There are an estimated 800,000 registered vehicles in the country. New vehicle sales stood at about 17,500 in 2018, according to the Automotive Association of Myanmar.

But Daiki Kato, managing director of Toyota Tsusho’s wholly owned dealership, said that the vast majority of vehicles there do not go through proper inspection for resale, with details of past accidents or theft concealed in order to sell them.

CarsDB posts trade information on 15,000 vehicles on its website, which has over 200,000 subscribers. The company has about 1.2 million Facebook followers.

For the upcoming auction, the firm will screen all vehicles for quality.

Toyota Tsusho has conducted car auctions in China, India and Indonesia. It has also established a local unit in Indonesia, where it sold about 61,000 vehicles in 2018.

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