BEIJING, Oct. 23 (Xinhua) -- A senior official said Tuesday that China's auto sales and production would enter a period of slow growth.
The country's auto sales and production had been at high levels, reaching more than 29.4 million units in 2017, and it was hard to sustain the high-speed growth, said Xin Guobin, deputy head of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology.
"Under the current circumstances, the period of fast auto sales and production expansion may be over, and slow growth is likely to be the new normal," Xin told a press conference.
The country's auto sales and production totaled 20.49 million in the first nine months of the year, up 0.9 percent and 1.5 percent from one year earlier, according to the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers.
In September, auto sales fell for the third month in a row, down 11.55 percent from one year earlier, while production dropped 11.71 percent.
Despite the slowed growth, Xin said the country's auto industry still enjoyed vast potential for development as huge demand would emerge from replacement and small cities.