Fiat Chrysler to suspend production at its European factories amidst the Coronavirus emergency

By:
on Mar 16, 2020
Updated: Mar 17, 2020
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  • Fiat Chrysler says majority of its European factories will remain closed until March 27th.
  • Further decision will be based on how COVID-19 crisis unravels in the next 2 months.
  • FCA forms an alliance with Ford, GM, and UAW to combat the fast spread of Coroanvirus.

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In
its announcement on Sunday, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (BIT:FCA) said that it
plans on suspending production at most of its factories located in Europe. The production
halt, it added, will begin from Monday and is planned till March 27th.
Further decision regarding operations will be taken on the basis of how the
Coronavirus emergency unravels in the next two weeks.

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The
Italian-American car manufacturer
had previously announced last week that
it wishes to intensify measures directed at minimizing the spread of the
flu-like virus in Italy. Owing to rapidly increasing cases of Coronavirus in
Italy, the government has currently ordered a nationwide quarantine.

FCA’s
Production Houses In Poland, Serbia, And Italy To Take A Hit

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Fiat
also highlighted in its announcement that its production houses in Poland,
Serbia, and Italy will primarily face a temporary shutdown. The automaker didn’t
divulge any further information about the number of its plants (23 in total)
that are to remain operational. Fiat’s spokesman didn’t respond immediately to
the request for comment.

According
to Fiat Chrysler:

“The
group is working with its supply base and business partners to be ready to
enable our manufacturing operations to deliver previously planned total levels
of production despite the suspension when market demand returns.”

Apart
from European factories, Fiat Chrysler is currently also facing a slowdown in
the United States that is also reporting a fast spread of COVID-19. Production
in China, however, is slowly returning to normal as authorities report the peak
phase of the virus to have faded away.

In
the automobile industry, Fiat Chrysler is so far the only manufacturer that has
reported one employee in the United States to have been tested positive for
Coronavirus. Previously, the company had also revealed one of its employees in the
Canadian factory to have refused to work as he feared that one of his
colleagues has been infected with the virus.

FCA,
Ford Motor, General Motors, And United Auto Workers Form An Alliance

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Fiat
Chrysler joined hands with Ford
Motor, General Motors, and United Auto Workers
on Sunday to form an
alliance that will work committedly towards minimizing the transmission of
COVID-19 among its workers.

The
Detroit auto manufacturers had also declared its new policy circling
work-from-home last week to protect its salaried employees against the health
hazard in North America.

At
the time of writing, Fiat Chrysler is trading at around £6.61 per share that
marks an around 45% decline in 2020 so far. FCA currently has a market cap of
just over £10 billion.

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