VW representatives are cautious about the figures Wolfsburg - Arabstoday The Volkswagen Group further strengthened its position in the global markets in the first three months of fiscal year 2013, despite the challenging conditions and intense competition. Including China, deliveries increased by 4.8 percent to 2.3 million vehicles worldwide. The Group’s share of the global passenger car market rose year-on-year to 12.6 percent (12.2 percent). "We made a healthy start to the year, but the coming months will be anything but easy. The current environment is definitely a tough challenge for the entire industry," said Professor Dr Martin Winterkorn, Chairman of the Board of Management of Volkswagen Aktiengesellschaft, in Wolfsburg on Monday. "The Volkswagen Group’s strong, broad positioning is our greatest strength. And this is paying off, particularly when times are difficult," stressed Winterkorn. Sales revenue in the first three months amounted to €46.6 billion (€47.3 billion). Operating profit was down on the high prior-year level at €2.3 billion (€3.2 billion). The consolidated operating profit does not include the €1.2 billion (€848 million) share of the operating profit of the Chinese joint ventures. These companies are included using the equity method and are therefore reflected in the financial result. Profit before tax amounted to €2.7 billion (€4.2 billion). The prior-year figure had been positively influenced by the remeasurement of the Porsche options. Profit after tax was €1.9 billion (€3.1 billion). CFO Hans Dieter Pötsch was guardedly confident. "The Volkswagen Group has an attractive product range. It is present in all major regions of the world, it is extremely innovative and it has the necessary financial solidity and strength. Nevertheless, given the uncertainty of the current economic environment, we will continue to strive for a high degree of flexibility and stick to our disciplined cost and investment management in order to reach our goals."