Toyota to restart China plants as Covid-19 deathtoll passes 1,700

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A Chinese worker installs parts to a Toyota VIOS at the Tianjin Toyota plant in Tianjin. AFP

Toyota Motor Corp will partly resume operations at three plants in China this week, bringing back some of the capacity that had been on an extended halt in response to the coronavirus outbreak which has killed more than 1,700 people and pitched Asia’s top economy into turmoil.

The factories in Changchun and Guangzhou restarted on Monday, while operations in Tianjin are set to resume on Tuesday, Kensuke Ko, a spokesman for the Japanese automaker, said in an email.

 

The plant in Chengdu will restart after next week, he said.

The spread of the virus has weighed on the global economy, with some major carmakers extending plant shutdowns amid shortages of parts and as efforts to combat the outbreak impeded the flow of workers.

An initial plan by Toyota to reopen factories on February 9 was delayed.

Fellow Japanese carmarker Honda Motor Co has said it plans to restart its China manufacturing operations in the week from February 17.

It is hard to pin down a reason for the delay in the resumption of operations at the Chengdu plant, Ko said.

The supply chain for parts and government policies are some of the factors, he said.

 

CHINA DAILY/ASIA NEWS NETWORK