Mitsubishi Resumes Operations At Thai Plant

Mitsubishi Motors restarted production at its plant in Thailand after being forced to suspend operations because of flood damage to its local suppliers.

LAEM CHABANG (Kyodo) -- Mitsubishi Motors Corp. restarted production Monday at its plant in Thailand after being forced to suspend operation there for about a month because of flood damage to its local suppliers.

As two other Japanese automakers Nissan Motor Co. and Mazda Motor Corp. also plan to resume output at their Thai plants, three of eight Japanese automakers operating in the country will normalize their production following Thailand's worst flooding in decades.

Toyota Motor Corp., the largest Japanese automaker, plans to restart local production on Nov. 21.

Of the eight Japanese automakers, Honda Motor Co. is the only company whose vehicle manufacturing plant was flooded. But the seven other automakers have also halted production by Oct. 20 as many parts manufacturers suffered damage by the flooding, causing disruption to supply chains.

Mitsubishi Motors, Nissan and Mazda managed to resume production by Monday by procuring parts through such means as manufacturing them in Japan.

Mitsubishi Motors President Osamu Masuko, who visited Thailand last week to prepare for the resumption of output, told reporters, "We have been able to restart production earlier than we thought thanks to efforts by parts manufacturers."

"We'd like to redeem a loss in the past one month," he said.

Mitsubishi Motors' plant in Laem Chabang, southeast of Bangkok, was not damaged in the massive flooding, but as local parts suppliers were hit by the disaster, output at the plant has been put on hold since Oct. 13, the company said.

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