COVID-19 outbreak adds to woes of auto manufacturers

The coronavirus outbreak will disrupt the availability of auto components as India imports about 10 per cent of them from China, the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) said on Wednesday.

“The disruption in the availability of these parts is likely to critically hamper production across all segments — passenger vehicles, commercial vehicles, three-wheelers and two-wheelers — besides gravely affecting electric vehicles,” said SIAM President Rajan Wadhera.

Manufacturers are exploring alternatives to fulfill their supply chain demands. “But that will also take a substantial amount of time to reach stable production scale as these components will need regulatory testing,” he said in a statement.

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Wadhera said in view of the Chinese New Year beginning on January 25, the Indian auto industry had maintained inventory levels. However, with the current lockdown in China, supply for BS-VI vehicles is likely to get impacted, he said.

The automobile industry continues to face low demand due to subdued consumer sentiment amid an economic slowdown while manufacturers gear up for a transition to BS-VI emission norms in the new financial year beginning April 1.

Coronavirus (COVID-19), which has infected more than 100,000 people worldwide, has disrupted supply chains and is also threatening to destabilise financial markets across the globe.

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