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Japanese companies in Thailand get boost

10-26-2011 09:14 BJT

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Japanese automakers take emergency measures, shutter operations in Thailand

TOKYO, Oct. 20 (Xinhua) -- Japanese automakers and their affiliates with operations in Thailand are taking emergency measures due to the recent flooding there that are on a par with those took during the March earthquake and tsunami in Japan, an industry body chief said Thursday.

Toshiyuki Shiga, chairman of the Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association (JAMA), said that the flooding in Thailand, which is now threatening the country's capital Bangkok, has forced all Japanese automakers based there to shutter their operations, causing production across the board to fall by some 6,000 units a day.

"Manufacturers, including automakers and parts makers, are taking emergency measures at the level equivalent to those against the earthquake," Toshiyuki Shiga said at a news conference in Tokyo.

Shiga, who also holds the position of chief operating officer of Nissan Motor Co., added that he could not say exactly when he thought production would be fully restored at Japanese plants in Thailand.

The JAMA chief highlighted the impact of the floods on key supply chains, an issue prevalent in the weeks and months following the March disasters here in Japan, but said that essential parts supplies could possibly be replaced by alternative companies' parts, which he believed could spur increased competitiveness and be of benefit to the industry. "If they can establish supply chains by taking crisis management into account, then it could enhance Japanese firms' competitiveness," Shiga told the press.

According to JAMA's statistics the majority of vehicles in Thailand are produced by Japanese car makers, with production totaling 1.6 million units in 2010, but analysts expect the floods to severely diminish Thailand's auto output, the biggest in Southeast Asia, and that the country will miss its target of 1.8 million units this year.

The floods in Thailand have inundated one-third of all provinces in the nation and more than 320 people have been killed since July.

According to the government of Yingluck Shinawatra, the country is in a national crisis with around nine million people being affected by the waters and 1,000 factories being forced to shutter their operations with damages to industries amounting some 3.3 billion U.S. dollars.

The nation's capital Bangkok is currently bracing itself for floods, with the military and civilians scrambling to build defenses from sandbags.


Editor:James |Source: CNTV

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