October 8th, 2012
Econintersect: The territorial dispute between China and Japan over the Senkaku Islands (Japanese name) or the Diaoyu Islands (Chinese name) continues to have economic fallout. See GEI News story. Sales of Japanese cars have fallen precipitously in China. The result is the announcement Monday (08 October 2012) that production by Toyota (NYSE:TOY), Nissan (OTC:NSANY) and Honda (NYSE:HMC). According to Reuters, Nissan will suspend the night shift while Toyota and Honda will shorten work hours and slow down assembly line speeds.
Reuters also reported that Mazda and Suzuki had cut back production in China a week ago before a holiday shutdown. Both companies declined specific comment on what production would be this week.
The latest production adjustments come on top of general cutbacks the Japanese automakers had been making before the protests, as the Chinese economy grew at its slowest pace in more than three years in the second quarter.
But the dramatic drop in demand for cars made by Japanese brands, which had a combined share of roughly a fifth of China's passenger car market in August before the protests, has been an unexpected boon for foreign rivals.
It was reported that other foreign car manufacturers had seen increased sales and were boosting production. Specifically mentioned were Hyundai (OTC:HYMFT, South Korea) and German companies Volkswagen (OTC:VLKAY), BMW and Daimler.
Japan Feuds with Neighbors Over Islands (GEI News, 20 August 2012)
Japan Carmakers to Cut China Production by Half (Reuters, CNBC, 07 October 2012)