LAHORE: Suzuki has notified the Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) that its motorcycle plant will observe non-production days (NDP) from March 21 to March 31. The company’s automotive plant will, however, remain operational. It company has attributed the decision to the restrictions placed by the Government of Pakistan in accessing letters of credit to import raw materials, and authorising foreign payments.
The interesting part of the notification is that the motorcycle has not previously observed NPDs in isolation of the automotive plant since the beginning of Pakistan’s current financial crisis from last year.
No more full speed ahead?
Suzuki’s decision to cease motorcycle manufacturing for the remainder of March is interesting because the company has actually managed to outperform its year-on-year (YoY) sales till now. The company’s 8MFY23 sales clocked in at 24.981 units sold compared to the 24,515 units it sold in the same period last year.
This marks the second motorcycle plant shutdown that Suzuki has observed in 2023, with the previous shutdown lasting from January 2 to January 6. All of Suzuki’s other plant shutdowns have been primarily concerned with their automobile division.
One after the other
Suzuki’s latest decision comes a week after Honda’s decision to shut its operations for the entirety of March from March 9 to March 31. Previously Ghandhara Nissan announced NPDs from March 6 to March 10, with the decision to shift to a bi-weekly production schedule for the remainder of March. Agriauto Industries also announced a partial shutdown for the entirety of March last week, whilst Sazgar announced its first ever plant closure for its four wheel division from February 27 to March 4.
Suzuki itself had announced plant closures previously from January 2 to January 6, from January 9 to January 13, from January 16 toJanuary 20, and from February 13 to February 21. Toyota too observed plant closures from February 1 to February 14 with the decision to shift to a single shift upon the resumption of regular production from February 15. Finally, Millat Tractors also observed a plant closure from January 6 January 15.
That is bad for the economy.