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Business Oct. 08, 2012 – 02:14PM JST( 2 )


Japan’s top three carmakers will halve production in China following a sales slump there sparked by a backlash over a territorial row between Tokyo and Beijing, a report said Monday.

Toyota, Honda and Nissan all plan to resume output at roughly half their normal levels on Monday when workers return to their jobs after the end of China’s week-long National Day holiday, the Nikkei business daily said.

Nissan will suspend its night shift and operate its Chinese factories only during the day “for the time being”, while Toyota and Honda will cut operating hours and run production lines at slower speeds, the daily said.

If the production cut continues for a month, each of the three firms is likely to suffer a reduction of 30,000 units to 40,000 units, the Nikkei said.

Sales of Toyota cars in China reportedly plunged by 50% in September from August due to the row over disputed islands in the East China Sea, which are controlled by Japan but claimed by China.

The dispute has badly affected trade between Asia’s two biggest economies.

Japanese factories and businesses across China closed or scaled back operations in September over fears they or their workers could be targeted by mobs protesting against Tokyo’s nationalisation of the islands.

Japanese carmakers plan to carefully monitor the impact of the protests on their sales, fearing that anti-Japan sentiment could instantly flare up if any new developments unfold in the island row, the daily said.


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