The earnings before tax of Volkswagen suffered a loss of 1.4 billion euros (1.65 billion United States dollars) in the first half of 2020, Germany’s largest carmaker said on Thursday.
The company earned 9.6 billion euros in pretax profit in the same period of last year.
“The first half of 2020 was one of the most challenging in the history of our company due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Frank Witter, member of Volkswagen’s board of management responsible for finance and IT.
Until the end of June, Volkswagen recorded a “sharp year-on-year decline” of 27.4 percent in its deliveries to 3.9 million vehicles. The carmaker said that as a consequence, sales revenues decreased by 23.2 percent to just 96.1 billion euros.
In the first half of the year, sales of Volkswagen in Western Europe decreased the most, shrinking by almost 40 percent compared to last year. China, on the other hand, was Volkswagen’s most stable market region, declining by only 17 percent.
In May, Volkswagen recorded an increase of delivered vehicles in China of 5.7 percent while worldwide deliveries declined by almost 34 percent.
Volkswagen warned that deliveries to customers in 2020 would be “significantly down” on the previous year due to the impact of the pandemic. The operating result for the full year would be “severely lower” than in 2019, but remain in “positive territory.”
“Given the scale and extent of the impact and the current inability to reliably estimate future developments,” Volkswagen’s board of management announced to lower the dividend for its shareholders.
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