SHENZHEN – China’s leading new energy vehicle (NEV) manufacturer BYD said its net profit fell 42 percent year-on-year in 2019 on falling sales and scaled-back subsidies.

Net profit totalled 1.61 billion yuan ($227 million) last year, compared to 2.78 billion yuan in 2018, BYD said in its preliminary earnings estimate filed to the Shenzhen Stock Exchange.

Meanwhile, it generated a revenue of 127.74 billion yuan, down 1.78 percent year-on-year.

BYD said the earnings decline was mainly due to industry and policy changes and increases in research and development spending.

Its NEV sales declined 7.39 percent year-on-year to 229,506 units in 2019, the carmaker said in early January. This came amid the cut in government subsidies by the largest margin and a broader weak automobile demand in the world’s largest auto market last year.

BYD’s shares fell 4.75 percent in Shenzhen on Wednesday when the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index closed 0.57 percent lower.

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