First duty-free ASEAN cars arrive in Vietnam hinh anh 1Honda CR-V car (Photo: caranddriver)

Hanoi (VNA) - Over 2,000 Honda cars from Thailand - the first batches of cars to enjoy zero percent import duty under the ASEAN Free Trade Agreement (AFTA) have been imported to Vietnam.

Under the AFTA commitments, a zero percent tax is applicable to cars imported from the bloc, with a localisation rate of 40 percent or more in the country of origin, starting January 1 this year.

The current batch has Jazz, Accord, CR-V and Civic models.

A representative of Honda Vietnam said that to import the autos to Vietnam, the firm had completed procedures to meet the requirements of Vietnam's Decree 116 on the conditions for production, assembly, import, business of warranty service, car maintenance and particularly the Vehicle Type Approval certificate granted by the Thailand Department of Land Transport.

A consulting staff member at Honda’s My Dinh agent told that the new vehicles would be rolled out to the market in May or early June, as it will take one or two months to complete checks on emission, quality and technical safety at ports.

“The price of each car is expected to fall by more than 200 million VND. This will be a turning point in the Vietnamese automobile market,” said the staff member.

Earlier, the insiders calculated that with the zero percent import tax, the price of imported cars from ASEAN countries to Vietnam would fall by 20-25 percent.

Toyota Motor Vietnam and Ford Vietnam are completing procedures to meet the requirements of Decree 116 to import cars which are favourites in Vietnam, such as the Ford Explorer, Everest, Ranger, Toyota Fortuner and Yaris.-VNA