South Korea’s auto production plunges

September 9th, 2012 - 7:14 pm ICT by IANS  

Seoul, Sep 9 (IANS) South Korea’s automobile production plunged 25.9 percent in August from a year earlier due to frequent partial strikes by major automakers, a government report showed Sunday.

Auto production by the nation’s five carmakers, including Hyundai Motor, Kia Motors, GM Korea, Renault Samsung Motors and Ssangyong Motor, reached 237,477 vehicles in August, down 25.9 percent from the same month of last year, according to the Ministry of Knowledge Economy.

The sharp drop was attributed to a supply shortage stemming mainly from partial strikes by key carmakers. Top automaker Hyundai Motor and its affiliate Kia Motors saw their unionized workers go on strikes around 10 times last month, reported Xinhua.

Hyundai lost around 68,000 vehicles in production last month due to the partial work stoppages that cost around 40,500 units for Kia and 7,400 units for GM Korea respectively, according to the ministry.

Hyundai and Kia, the main affiliates of the world’s No. 5 automaker Hyundai Motor Group, manufactured cars that amounted to 78,843 units and 87,762 units each in August, down 34.7 percent and 19.6 percent from the prior year.

Cars produced by GM Korea contracted 17.3 percent on-year to 49,022 units in August, while auto production by Renault Samsung and Ssangyong Motor dropped 43.6 percent and 2.1 percent each last month.

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