Japan effect: Ford Idles 3 plants in Asia, S. Africa image

Ford Motor Corporation idled three assembly plants in China, Taiwan, and South Africa on Monday as the company is experiencing shortage of parts from Japan.

All three plants, one each in Taiwan, China and South Africa, were scheduled to be shut later, and Ford moved up those dates, a Ford spokesman said.

Ford’s Taiwan assembly plant where it builds some Escape, Focus and Mazda 3 vehicles was temporarily closed Monday for two weeks.

The Nanjing plant is a joint venture with Mazda and makes compact cars for both companies. The Pretoria plant makes small cars and pickup trucks for both companies.

Ford made a similar move earlier this month in Europe, when it shut its plant at Genk in Belgium for a week, pushing ahead a scheduled week of downtime.
That shutdown was also linked to the lack of parts from Japanese suppliers.

Johnson Chief Executive Stephen Roell said in a statement that he expects the auto makers’ production cutbacks “will be short-lived and recoverable.” Its shares fell 3%, or $1.13, to $39.60 in 4 p.m. trading on the New York Stock Exchange.