Page last updated at 10:43 GMT, Thursday, 22 October 2009 11:43 UK

Hyundai profits reach record high

Hyundai sign
Hyundai is South Korea's top carmaker

Quarterly profit at Hyundai has tripled to reach a record high, helped by government incentives and a lack of strikes, the company says.

The company reported a net profit of 979.1bn won ($832.2m; £497.4m) in the third quarter.

This figure is more than three times the 264.8bn won profit that the company made a year ago.

Since May, the South Korean government has been offering consumers a 70% cut in taxes when they buy new cars.

Hyundai's success comes as the global industry struggles to emerge from an unprecedented downturn that drove Chrysler and General Motors to bankruptcy.

On Wednesday, Peugeot Citroen, Europe's second-biggest carmaker, reported lower-than-forecast third-quarter sales.

And Russia's largest carmaker Avtovaz said it was to cut up to 27,600 jobs as it tries to cope with the global slump in demand.

Honda is the only major Japanese car maker expected to post an operating profit in the first half of the year, the Nikkei business daily reported on Thursday.

Hyundai now looks set to challenge Germany's Volkswagen as the most profitable of the world's major carmakers this year.

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