Recovery boosts Asia-Pacific PC sales to three Million

Unit sales of PCs for the second quarter of 1999 in New Zealand were up 19.4% on the same quarter last year, from 68,000 units to to 81,000 - compared to a jump of 34% in total unit sales throughout the Asia-Pacific region.

Sales of PCs in the Asia-Pacific region (excluding Japan) grew by 18% in the second quarter of 1999 over the first quarter to top the 3 million unit mark for the first time ever, according to figures released today by market analyst International Data (IDC).

Unit sales were 34% higher than for the same quarter a year ago, IDC said in the report. In New Zealand unit sales were up 19.4% on the same quarter last year, from 68,000 units to to 81,000.

Economic recovery, price erosion, government tenders, year 2000-related spending and a number of subsidised PC purchase with Internet access bundles are some of the key reasons for the strong sales figures, IDC said.

Revenues from PC sales in the region were up 11.5% over the previous quarter and 33% over the equivalent period in 1998, underlining the strong recovery of IT spending in the region, IDC said.

All of the countries in Asia-Pacific posted higher sales than in the same quarter of 1998, but there were wide variations in growth, according to IDC.

The fastest growing major markets were South Korea, which saw sales rise 78% over the year-earlier period to 488,000 units, and Taiwan, with sales more than doubling over the same quarter last year to 335,000 units.

Other Southeast Asian countries hit by the 1997 economic crisis also recorded high annual PC sales growth, with Indonesia’s market growing over the same quarter in the previous year by 461% in unit terms, Thailand’s by 62% and the Philippines' by 40%. The advanced economies of Hong Kong and Singapore both saw PC unit shipments grow over 30% over the previous year, IDC said.

China, which accounts for almost 40% of PC sales in the region, was one of the slowest growing countries with sales up over the previous year's quarter by 17.6% to 1.2 million units. The second largest market remained Australia, which grew by 16.1% over the year-earlier period to reach 540,000 unit sales.

IBM is the leading vendor in the region, with 315,000 unit sales in the second quarter, 47% up on sales the same quarter in the previous year, according to IDC figures. The fastest-growing major vendor was China’s Legend Group, which posted a 78% growth in sales over the same quarter last year to 261,000 units despite the Mainland's overall slow PC sales growth -- a sign that the company is rapidly gaining market share on its home ground, IDC said.

IDC is owned by IDG News Service parent corporation International Data Group.

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