Japanese manufacturers have started production again at factories in the earthquake-hit northeast of the country, but Toyota Motor Corp said it plans to shut down 18 assembly lines for a few days.

Japanese manufacturers have started production again at factories in the earthquake-hit northeast of the country, but Toyota Motor Corp said it plans to shut down 18 assembly lines for a few days next week due to a shortage of parts from suppliers.

On the one hand, the limited damage caused by the 7.4-magnitude earthquake has highlighted Japan’s success in building resilience against the frequent tremors that shake the archipelago. But the earthquake has raised concerns about further disruptions to a pandemic-stricken supply chain for precision components vital to electronics and automotive manufacturing, in which Japanese manufacturers play a leading role.

Toyota, the world’s largest automaker by sales volume, said it will shut down its 18 lines at 11 domestic plants, usually for three days. It had suspended operations at three plants as a result of the earthquake and is seeing a loss of production of 20,000 units as a result of the shutdowns. Toyota has already lowered its global production target due to the ongoing shortage of chips.

Murata Manufacturing Co Ltd, the largest global supplier of ceramic capacitors used in smartphones and cars, said it resumed production on Friday at two shut down plants and the remaining two shut down plants to restart next week. A fire that broke out at a factory producing chip inductors caused some equipment damage.

Renesas Electronics Corp., which makes nearly a third of the microcontroller chips used in cars worldwide, said it has resumed production after shutting down two plants with a partial shutdown at a third. All three plants, including the Naka plant where fire broke out last year, are expected to return to pre-quake capacity by Wednesday, Renesas said.

Power has largely been restored in the northeast, where Japan’s largest earthquake struck 11 years ago. Areas of Tokyo have been without power for nearly three hours after the latest earthquake, which killed three people and injured 183.

The power outage has forced the removal of some COVID-19 vaccines kept in cool storage, the Yomiuri newspaper reported. Tech conglomerate Sony Group Corp. is in the process of gradually restarting production at three factories in the earthquake-affected area, a spokesman said.

There is some damage to a facility in Shiroishi, Miyagi Prefecture, that produces laser diodes, but the impact on production is limited, Sony said.

(Reporting by Shinji Kitamura, Satoshi Sugiyama and Tim Kelly; Additional reporting by Kantaro Komiya and Ritsuko Shimizu; Writing by Sam Nussey; Editing by Edwina Gibbs)


This post Earthquake-stricken factories in Japan restart but Toyota suspends 18 assembly lines was original published at “https://www.financialexpress.com/express-mobility/quake-hit-japan-plants-restart-but-toyota-to-suspend-18-assembly-lines/2466736/”

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