bmwMoneyweb reports that BMW South Africa is to shut down its Rosslyn manufacturing plant in Pretoria for two weeks because of risks posed by Covid-19 and the resulting impact on demand for new vehicles.  

The temporary closure of the plant will affect about 2,500 workers and other group employees.  Alex Parker of BMW SA said on Wednesday the company would start to shut down production on Thursday, with BMW’s car plants in Europe and in SA to be shut by the end of the week.  Volkswagen has also suspended production for two weeks at plants in Europe operated by the Volkswagen Passenger Car brand, but its plant in Uitenhage in SA is unaffected at this stage.  Parker declined to comment on whether a ‘no work, no pay’ policy will apply to workers and employees affected by the shutdown.  Mike Mabasa, CE of the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of SA (Naamsa), said on Wednesday that they were concerned that the impact of the coronavirus on the industry was going to “be significant”.   He indicated that the plant shutdowns announced by BMW would have a “huge impact” on Naamsa’s export, sales and production forecasts for this year.  “The longer the current situation persists, it will obviously continue to make the situation even worse and also in relation to global shutdowns,” he said.

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