Tesla Shuts down Shanghai Gigafactory for Two Days amid COVID-19

Tesla will suspend production at its Shanghai Gigafactory for two days, Reuters reported Wednesday. It was reported that both Tesla suppliers and employees were notified on Wednesday to suspend production on Wednesday and Thursday as China tightens its pandemic prevention and control measures.

As was learned from two sources, the notice applied to Tesla’s final assembly line. The notice did not say whether the measures would result in lost production or whether Tesla could make up for lost production when it restarted operations.

Tesla Shanghai Gigafactory produces cars for the Chinese market and serves as an important export hub to markets such as Germany and Japan. Tesla delivered 56,515 vehicles in February, including 33,315 for export, an average daily delivery of about 2,018 vehicles, according to the China Passenger Car Association.

So far, 27 provinces in China have confirmed cases. In Shanghai, neither buses nor subways were shut down, but control measures have been strict. The Shanghai government is forbidding people from leaving the city unless absolutely necessary. It has shut down passenger stations, organized online teaching for primary and secondary schools, and closed universities and adopted control measures to stymie the current outbreak.

Apart from Tesla, many enterprises in China have been subjected to production halts due to pandemic prevention measures. Toyota’s spokesman said on Monday that the operation of the passenger car joint venture factory in Changchun City, Jilin Province were suspended as of March 14th.

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Foxconn, Apple’s supplier, also suspended the operation of its Shenzhen park on Monday because of the epidemic, and immediately started epidemic prevention measures such as nucleic acid testing for all employees. FAW Group announced on Tuesday it had shut down all five of its major vehicle factories in Changchun until March 16th. The specific date of restoring production will be determined by the overall situation of epidemic prevention and control and the relevant requirements of local authorities.