Nissan forced to shut Sunderland plant for three days

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The difficulties for Japanese manufacturers continues, as Nissan has announced that its Sunderland factory will be shut down for three days at the end of April.

The move has been forced by a shortage of parts from Japan, still recovering from the devastating earthquake of last month and follows Honda's decision to halve production at its Swindon plant announced yesterday.

Nissan's Sunderland plant is a flagship operation for the UK car industry, employing over 4,900 people and building Nissan's Juke, Note and Qashqai models.

The shutdown from the 26-28 April comes in the middle of a series of four bank holidays over two weeks that business leaders have said will affect the productivity of UK businesses.

The company is optimistic that it can make up the shortfall by the end of the year however: "Demand for all Sunderland-produced models remains high and once the normal delivery of components has been re-established, the plant will work to recover any lost volume as quickly as possible," a spokesman said.

This won't be the end of the story, however, as there is still a danger that more enforced shutdowns will be required as Japan struggles to get back on its feet.

"If we need to take further action then we will," the spokesman continued.