Operations Restart While OEMs Fight COVID-19By Alejandro Enríquez | Thu, 05/28/2020 - 13:21
Local support to fight COVID-19 and resuming operations were the industry's highlights during the week. At the international level, the renewed Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance gained strength. McLaren Group presented its 1Q20 results and COVID-19 contagions arose at the US Big Three's facilities.
The automotive sector in Mexico is gradually resuming operations. GM was among the first to resume operations last week. Along the week, Nissan, GM, and BMW have been preparing all the sanitary protocols needed to follow suit. Yesterday, Ford also announced its intention to gradually resume production at its plants in Chihuahua, Hermosillo and Irapuato.
Further reading: GM Restarts Operations; Nissan Starts Engines
German Volkswagen and Audi might have to wait longer than expected due to the Puebla's government refusal for essential industries to resume operations on June 1. Governor Barbosa reaffirmed his decision alleging "sacrifices must be made" to take care of the general interest.
Further reading: Puebla Refuses to Restart Auto Operations on June 1
Automakers Help to Fight COVID-19
Throughout the pandemic, OEMs have implemented different initiatives to help Mexico fight COVID-19 contagions. This week, Audi México provided medical equipment for four hospitals in Puebla while also producing 40,000 reusable facemasks through its suppliers. On its behalf, Nissan provided vehicles for the transportation of medical equipment and medical staff in Mexico City and Oaxaca.
Further reading: Audi, Nissan: Global Players Provide Local Support
An Alliance That Gains Strength
Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance gained strength this week after Chairman Jean-Dominique Senard announced the strategies to assure sustainable profitability. The three automakers will conduct a leader-follower scheme under which the expertise of one will be accompanied by the abilities of the others. The announcement comes after Nissan and Renault reported their first losses in years.
Further reading: Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance Strengthened
As part of its restructuring plan, Nissan recently announced the closure of its plant in Barcelona. The Spanish government has announced its intentions to revise its decision. Reuters has also reported that Spanish workers have started to protest outside the facilities.
COVID-19's Impact on Results
McLaren Group presented its results for 1Q20. The English firm saw a setback in revenues from £284 million (US$348.13 million) to £109 million (US$134.5 million), Reuters reported. On its part, the Top 8 carmakers in Japan reported a decline in sales of 54.4 percent in April.