The Russian car production fell 1.8% in 2013, and the government may extend a cheap auto credit program, Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich said Monday.

“Before last July we forecasted car output decrease in the country to reach 7-8%. It edged down last year. It was not a zero, but it only amounted to 1.8% as compared to 2012,” Dvorkovich said.

To support the industry, the government may prolong the reduced rate car loan program beyond the current April deadline until 2015, he said.

“We will monitor the situation in the first quarter and if we see that it is not stable without such measures, that there is no improvement, then we will suggest prolonging the program for the entire of 2014,” Dvorkovich said.

Banks have provided 260,000 cut-rate loans since that the program was launched, he said. About 80% of cars bought on money borrowed from banks in 2013 were domestically produced, he added.