Earthquake Aftershocks – Toyota to Shut 5 European Plants

Toyota's production disruptions continue in what is a global problem.

Toyota Motor Europe Today announced today that production at 5 European plants will be stopped for several days in late April and early May. The Toyota European plants will then run at a reduced volume during the month of May in order to manage available parts supply, following the 11 March 2011 Japan earthquake and tsunami disaster.

The Toyota European shutdown is being planned around upcoming scheduled public holidays or school holidays where possible in order to make it easier for employees to take the time off.

Toyota said in a statement that the decision is “necessary as a result of forecasted parts supply difficulties.”

The plants affected are, for the production of vehicles, Toyota Motor Manufacturing UK (TMUK) in Burnaston, Toyota Motor Manufacturing Turkey (TMMT) in Adapazari, and Toyota Motor Manufacturing France (TMMF) in Onnaing.  The decision also applies to engine manufacturing facilities Toyota Motor Industries Poland (TMIP) in Jelcz-Laskowice and TMUK Engine Plant in Deeside, Wales.

The non-production days for these plants will be 21 and 22 April, from 25 to 29 April, and 2 May.  However some plants had previously planned public or company holidays:  TMUK on 22, 25 and 29 April and 2 May; TMMF on 25 April, and TMIP on 25 April and 2 and 3 May.

The exact reduced work schedules in May will be determined by each manufacturing company based on local labor laws and, as required, agreements with employee representatives.

“Even though most of our parts come from European suppliers, we are experiencing gaps in our supply chain due to the situation in Japan,” said Didier Leroy, President and CEO of Toyota Motor Europe (TME).  “By adjusting our production in Europe, we are adapting to the current situation whilst not completely interrupting our deliveries of vehicles to our customers.”

No decision has yet been made regarding production beyond the month of May. The company will continue to evaluate its supply chain and make plans based on the situation. “Our focus is dual: help Japan recover, and return to normal as soon as possible in Europe to meet a market demand that is much better than in the past two years, helped by our excellent product offering,” said Leroy.

Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC) announced last week that production at its factories in Japan will restart from 18 April until 27 April at 50% of normal pace. Toyota also announced production disruptions at its North American plants.

(See Toyota to Resume Vehicle Production at All Japan Plants; Toyota Cuts North American Car and Truck Production; Letter from Japan: Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Japan ongoing Earthquake and Tsunami Coverage )

About Kenneth Zino

Ken Zino is an auto industry veteran with global experience in print, broadcast and electronic media. He has auto testing, marketing, public relations and communications expertise garnered while working in Asia, Europe and the U.S.
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