The country imported 4,000 cars, worth 78 million USD, in August, bringing the total number in the first eight months of the year to 42,000, worth 782 million USD, according to the General Statistics Office.

The number of imports in the first eight months of the year was up 30 percent in terms of volume and nearly 32 percent in terms of value against 2010.

Meanwhile, 5,000 motorbikes, worth 7 million USD, were imported in August, down 1,000 units against the previous month.

In the first eight months of the year, 49,000 motorbikes totally worth 67 million USD, were imported into the country, down 23.2 percent and 18.8 percent in volume and value respectively against the same period last year.

Most of the imported automobiles and motorbikes were from the Republic of Korea, mainland China, Japan, Taiwan, the US and Germany.

The office said that low purchasing power in the domestic market negatively affected not only imported vehicles but also locally made products, adding that domestic motorbike producers had an inventory index of 40 percent in the first eight months of the year.

Many motorbike dealers on Hue Street in the capital said they had to sell many kinds of motorbikes for less than their listed prices to deal with an excess in inventory.

The Ministry of Finance is drafting regulations to revise the special consumption tax on vehicles as the current regulations have proved unsuitable after two years in effect.

Under the new regulations, several kinds of vehicles - such as national defence vehicles, or those used only in economic zones and recreation areas – will be exempted from the tax.

The draft also gives detailed instructions on when and how the tax should be applied to different kind of vehicles, since the current lack of guidance has caused difficulty for businesses and customs./.