General Motors sales continue to head downhill in the face of the economic slowdown .
In the first half of this year they sold 3.55 million vehicles worldwide – 21.8 percent fewer than in the same period last year. Between April and June sales improved a bit, they were down 15.4 percent on last year. Once its best market, the US continues to be a disaster area for GM, with sales in the second quarter of the year down by nearly a third. In Europe they were 20 percent lower. Asia, and particularly China, is the one bright spot with sales rising. After emerging from bankruptcy protection having shed its biggest debts, GM is slimming down by selling various divisions including Opel and Vauxhall. But there is a potential problem with the carmaker reportedly at odds with the German government over who the buyer should be. Berlin favours Canadian car parts firm Magna as do the German states where Opel has factories, while GM prefers the offer from RHJ, a Belgium-based financial investor. A decision on Opel’s future is not expected before next week.