By Olga Razumovskaya

MOSCOW--New-car sales in Russia declined at a significantly slower pace in annual terms in October than in September, the Association of European Business Automobile Manufacturers Committee, or AEB, said Wednesday.

Sales of new cars and light commercial vehicles fell 2.6% in October from a year earlier to 126,658 vehicles.

The AEB said last month that sales of new cars and light commercial vehicles in September fell 10.9% from a year earlier to 125,568 vehicles.

Car market sales in October were down only moderately from the same month last year, while exceeding the September result by a small margin, Joerg Schreiber, chairman of the AEB, said. "This is not a bad result, confirming our earlier voiced expectation that the new car registration trend should improve towards year end," he added.

He said the main driver of the slowdown in declining sales was government programs offering car buyers purchase incentives.

"These programs are running out, in any case in the well-established form as we know them. What awaits us in 2017 remains to be seen. But it is clear already that without meaningful support from the government, any stabilization trend would be very short-lived," Mr. Schreiber said.

Write to Olga Razumovskaya at olga.razumovskaya@wsj.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

November 09, 2016 06:08 ET (11:08 GMT)

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