Honda Atlas Cars Pakistan Ltd has extended its plant shut down for another 15 days due to the economic crisis in the country and restrictions on importing goods. The carmaker had initially shut down production from March 8 to March 31 and later extended it to April 15. However, due to the government’s measures to deal with the economic situation, Honda Atlas has decided to continue the shutdown until April 30, 2023, citing severe disruptions in its supply chain.
Other automakers, such as Indus Motor Company Limited and Pak Suzuki Motor Company, have also faced similar challenges in the last fiscal year, and the situation has caused concerns about the future of Pakistan’s economy. Pakistan’s economic crisis has caused the central bank’s foreign exchange reserves to drop to a level that can barely cover a month’s imports. The government’s restrictions on opening letters of credit for imports and halting foreign payments have further worsened the situation for automakers in the country.
The situation has led to Pak Suzuki Motor Company Ltd (PSMC), a unit of Japan’s Suzuki, also announcing an extension of its plant shutdown for 13 days due to a shortage of inventory. The motorcycle plant initially announced an 11-day shutdown on March 16, which was later extended by 15 days until April 15. The automobile production was also halted for a week from April 7 to April 23 for the same reasons. It remains unclear what steps the government will take to address the country’s economic challenges amidst the severe disruptions in the automotive supply chain.