February 6, 2022
Ford curbs N.American production as chip shortage hits: media
Major automaker Ford will cut its North American vehicle production next week due to a semiconductor shortage, US media reported Saturday.
Ford plans to suspend production of vehicles including the Ford Bronco, the popular F-150 pickup and the new Mustang Mach-E electric vehicle at its plants in Michigan, Illinois and Mexico, according to outlets including CNBC.
Production will be slowed at other facilities in Missouri, Michigan and Kentucky, while overtime will be eliminated at Ford's Oakville, Ontario operations in Canada.
The company has yet to respond to queries by AFP.
A shortage of semiconductors—essential components in new vehicles, and primarily manufactured in Asia—has impacted automobile production since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, causing prices to spike and contributing to surging US inflation.
President Joe Biden, keen to boost American auto manufacturing, wants to bring semiconductor chip production back to the United States and has held several events to promote massive domestic investments.
US lawmakers meanwhile voted Friday to greenlight legislation aimed at jump-starting tens of billions of dollars in such research and manufacturing, countering China's growing influence and easing a global shortage of the computer chips.
In late January, high-tech giant Intel announced it would begin construction late this year of two semiconductor factories in Ohio, with the aim of producing chips by 2025. Biden called the $20 billion investment "historic."
Ford returned to profitability in 2021, and on Thursday reported net profit of $17.9 billion. But the manufacturer remains troubled by supply chain problems, and on Friday, Ford shares slumped 9.7 percent on Wall Street.
© 2022 AFP