Mitsubishi to halt EU production

Mitsubishi to halt EU production

TOKYO - Agence France-Presse
Japan’s Mitsubishi Motors is to stop manufacturing automobiles in Europe by around 2013 as it shifts its focus to emerging markets, reports said yesterday.

Under the plan, which would be the first withdrawal from Europe by a major Japanese carmaker, the company will sell its NedCar subsidiary plant in Born, in the Netherlands, the Japanese business daily Nikkei and Jiji Press reported, without identifying their sources.

NedCar was established in 1991 and has been producing the Colt subcompact and the Outlander sports utility vehicle, but its output has remained sharply below its production capacity of 200,000 units a year, contributing to Mitsubishi Motors’ operating loss in Europe, the Nikkei said.

Mitsubishi will enter into negotiations with labor unions and the Dutch government to sell the plant, which employs roughly 1,500 people, Jiji reported, adding the company saw no future profits in Europe.

Japan’s Suzuki Motor, meanwhile, said yesterday its net profit fell 4.7 percent for the nine months to December and downgraded its annual sales forecast due to the impact of a strong yen and a slump in India.