Press Trust of India reported that Japanese auto major Toyota has suspended part of its production at its biggest plant in China due to sluggish sales in the country after bilateral ties soured over the disputed islands in the East China Sea.
The Tianjin plant is Toyota’s largest in China and assembly lines halted production on Monday, the company announced but all staff are working as usual. The plant produces vehicles, such as Corolla, Crown, RAV4 and Vios.
Annual production of the plant is 500,000, accounting for 60% of the company’s total production volume in China. The move follows a drastic sales volume drop in the country since the Diaoyu Islands territorial dispute broke out between China and Japan.
China’s state run Xinhua news agency quoted a Toyota spokesman as saying that “The tense Sino Japan relations has affected sales of Toyota automobiles in China and it is a common practice for a company to adjust production volume based on market demand and orders.”
Japanese businesses in China were hit after Japan purchased the disputed islands called Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China, from a private owner, which Beijing has termed as stealing its property.
Mr Hong Lei Chinese foreign ministry spokesman said that “The Diaoyu Island and its affiliated islets belong to China and have been an inherent part of Chinese territory since ancient times. China holds indisputable sovereignty over them.”
The report said that at the Toyota outlet in Tianjin, customer numbers have decreased by 30%.
Source - Press Trust of India