Honda’s sales plunge 52% on lockdown

The closure also affects the carmaker’s new model production, supply chain and parts exportation

By TMR / Pic by BLOOMBERG

HONDA (M) Sdn Bhd’s car sales declined 52% year-on-year from May to July 2021 due to prolonged business closure during the lockdown.

In a statement yesterday, the Japanese carmaker stated that it sold about 5,700 units in this period compared to 12,000 units sold in the same period last year when the country was under Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO) and Recovery MCO.

“The prolonged business closure has also impacted Honda’s new model production due to no testing conducted in the manufacturing facility. The company’s supply chain and exportation of parts are also affected,” MD and CEO Madoka Chujo noted.

She added that the automotive industry supports a wide network of local components and parts suppliers that comprises of a few tiers.

“These suppliers might not be able to sustain their operations and this will subsequently affect the overall supply chain.

“The current extended lockdown and no visibility on business resumption time frame have impacted planning and overall investment of the automotive marques,” Chujo added.

She said the prolonged closure also affected Honda’s 101 authorised dealers who face financial difficulties and the uncertainty of employment for sales and service advisors as well as other staff at the dealers.

The sales advisors whose income largely depend on commission earned, have been severely impacted.

“Honda understands the hardship of these dealers and Honda associates are going through, and hence, the company is trying to do its best to assist them during difficult times.

“One of the efforts is by registering Honda associates under the Public-Private Partnership Industrial Covid-19 Immunisation Programme (Pikas) to expedite the country’s rate of vaccination,” she said.

Honda targets to achieve 100% of first dose vaccination for all its associates by mid-August 2021.

Chujo stated that Honda hopes for early resumption of the automotive sector under strict standard operating procedures and guidelines set by the government.

“This is to ensure there will be no long-term impact such as retrenchment of employees and can help to mitigate potential business closure along the supply chain,” she added. — TMR