Lukewarm response to Pragati’s Pajero sales

February 17, 2013

Pragati Industries Limited, the state-run automobile assembling industry, sold 300 units of vehicle in the first seven months of the current financial year which was only 27 per cent of their estimated annual target.
The government had set a target for the PIL to sell 1,100 units of vehicle in the FY 2012-13 but it is unlikely to achieve the target as the government procurement of vehicles has come down, said a PIL official.
The sales might increase in the later part of the financial year when the government’s purchase of such vehicles usually increases, he said.
He, however, said they had already put a proposal to the government to revise down the target.
The PIL started selling Mitsubishi Pajero Sports CR 45 — a sports utility vehicle — in August 2011, has so far sold 218 such jeeps.
Mitsubishi Pajero Sports CR 45 is the successor to Mitsubishi Pajero V-31, which became popular after its assembling in 1998 as the government purchased the model for upazila-level offices.
But the new model of Pajero vehicle is also open for sale to both government agencies and private agencies or individuals. Out of 218 jeeps, private agencies or individuals have so far bought 55 vehicles, PIL officials said.
After the successful assembling and marketing of Mitsubishi Pajero V-31 a four-member Bangladeshi delegation from the PIL visited Mitsubishi Pajero Manufacturing industry in Thailand on September 9, 2009 to find ways for further expansion of the business. Another four-member Mitsubishi delegation also visited the Pragati Industry and expressed satisfaction over its overall condition.
Later, Mitsubishi Motors Corporation of Japan and Pragati Industries Limited signed a five-year agreement on July 8, 2010 for the production and sale of this new Pajero jeep and started assembling Pajero Sports CR 45 under the agreement.
Expressing happiness over the sales of the new model of Pajero, PIL officials said they hoped that the sales would increase in the days to come. Buyers other than government agencies are gradually showing interest in buying Pragati jeeps which will eventually increase the sales of the vehicles, they said.
PIL managing director AKM Solaiman Haque told New Age that Pajero Sports CR 45 was an aristocratic vehicle and customers were getting opportunity to buy such kind of worldwide popular brand at around Tk 75 lakh while its present imported price is Tk 1.2 core.
Government-level buyers can purchase the vehicles from the Pragati showroom in the capital’s Tejgaon industrial area and others can buy the vehicles from showrooms of Rangs Motors, authorised dealer of Mitsubishi Motors Corporation of Japan.
Solaiman said 274 Pajero sports jeeps had so far been assembled and 218 of them sold out. A state-owned bank has recently put an order to buy two sports jeeps and Rangs has also agreed to buy 20 vehicles for private sales at its showrooms, he said.
Pragati, which had sold more than 2,000 Mitsubishi Pajero V-31 to the government, local government and autonomous bodies in the last three fiscal years, bagged Tk 37 crore as profit in the last financial year.
In the first five months of the current financial year, the PIL earned Tk 7.12 crore as net profit from selling vehicles worth Tk 95.87 crore.

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