TOKYO (Reuters) – Toyota Motor Corp. (7203.T) said it had suspended operations at more than a dozen assembly plants in Japan on Tuesday due to a production system glitch, which will likely shut down nearly all of its domestic production. production.
A spokesperson for the company said the company is looking into the cause of the problem, adding that it “is most likely not caused by a cyberattack.” The spokesman added that the defect means that the company was unable to order the components.
The spokesperson said that while the exact size of the production loss is not clear, operations have ceased at all but two of Toyota’s domestic assembly plants, the Miyata plant in southern Fukuoka prefecture and the Kyoto plant operated by the Toyota Daihatsu unit.
Its 14 plants in Japan together account for about a third of Toyota’s global production, according to Reuters calculations. Toyota is the largest automaker in the world in terms of sales.
The spokesman said operations had been halted as of Tuesday morning, and it was not clear whether they could be resumed from the afternoon.
Toyota operations were halted last year when one of its suppliers was hit by a cyberattack. The one-day outage caused the loss of nearly 13,000 vehicles in production.
The automaker pioneered just-in-time inventory management, which keeps costs down but also means that any disruption in the logistical chain can jeopardize production.
The outage is the latest blow to Japanese companies. Some Japanese companies and government offices have reported a torrent of harassing phone calls in recent days, which the government said were likely to come from China, after the release of treated radioactive water from the Fukushima nuclear power plant in the Pacific Ocean.
Toyota shares fell 0.3% to 2,429 yen in early Tokyo trading.
(Reporting by Satoshi Sugiyama) Additional reporting by Myung Kim; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman and Christopher Cushing
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