Johannesburg — BRICS countries will continue to see increased investments in the automotive sector, according to a new KPMG Global Automotive Executive survey released here on Thursday.
KPMG is a global network of professional services firms providing audit, tax and advisory services.
The survey of 200 auto executives from 31 countries indicates that an average of nearly six out of 10 respondents say they will increase their investments in the BRICS countries, which are expected to account for nearly 50 percent of all global vehicle sales by 2018.
According to the survey, China is "clearly the top choice for investmen,", followed by India, with Russia and Brazil in third and fourth places respectively.
"Respondents see no slowdown in the rise of emerging markets, with 62 percent reporting that the four BRICs share of total new car sales will be between 41 and 50 percent by 2018. In three to five years, BRIC countries are expected to export a significant number of vehicles," KPMG Africa Automotive leader Gavin Maile said.
"A majority believe the four BRICs' share of total new car sales will be between 41 and 50 percent by 2018," he added.
BRICS is an acronym for the powerful grouping of the world's leading emerging economies, namely Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.
The grouping's 5th summit will be held in Durban, South Africa on March 26 -27.
KPMG said as their export drive intensifies, BRIC automakers are focusing on South East Asia, with Eastern Europe and South America the next two most promising choices. Seventy percent of respondents say that Eastern Europe provides the best hub for entering Western European markets.
"Compared to our previous 2012 survey, respondents forecast exports from the BRICs to grow more quickly. 36 percent feel Russia will sell over a million vehicles overseas within the next 3-5 years," Maile said.
KPMG said, however, it is getting harder to export into or set up production facilities in the four main BRIC markets, with environmental restrictions the biggest obstacle, while import/ export duties and governmental interventions are the fastest rising barriers - particularly India and China.
A significant proportion of respondents believe sales and production will decrease across Europe and Japan over the next five years, Maile said. "It is a completely different picture in the BRICs, while hopes are also high for two new Asian economies -- Indonesia and Malaysia -- as well as for Mexico and South Africa. Yet these growth markets will not halt industry overcapacity -- something that automakers are uncertain how to address effectively," he added.