General Motors has announced it will extend the ongoing downtime at three of its assembly plants in North America due to the ongoing global semiconductor shortage.
The automaker said previously that it would pause production at its Fairfax Assembly plant in Kansas, CAMI Assembly plant in Ontario and San Luis Potosí Assembly plant in Mexico until at least mid-March due to semiconductor microchip shortages. Now the automaker has confirmed the production downtime at San Luis Potosí Assembly will continue until the end of March at the earliest, while Fairfax and CAMI will remain closed until at least mid-April.
“GM continues to leverage every available semiconductor to build and ship our most popular and in-demand products, including full-size trucks and SUVs for our customers,” the automaker said in a prepared statement. “GM has not taken downtime or reduced shifts at any of its truck plants due to the shortage. We continue to work closely with our supply base to find solutions for our suppliers’ semiconductor requirements and to mitigate impacts on GM”
“Our intent is to make up as much production lost at these plants as possible,” the company also said. “We contemplated this downtime when we discussed our outlook for 2021 last month.”
In addition to the three North American plants affected by the chip shortage, GM also halved production at one of its plants in South Korea amid the semiconductor shortage.
The global semiconductor supply shortage has forced several major automakers to scale back output and adjust their production targets and financial goals for 2021. Ford, Toyota, VW and Nissan have all been affected by the chip shortage in recent months, in addition to GM. The situation is affecting the consumer electronics and medical device industries as well, which are competing with automakers for supremacy over the limited chip supply.
The Biden Administration is currently seeking $37 billion in funding in order to bolster the United States’ semiconductor chip manufacturing capabilities and help address the ongoing microchip supply shortage. The majority of microchips are currently made in China, Taiwan and elsewhere in East Asia.
“I’m directing senior officials in my administration to work with industrial leaders to identify solutions to the semiconductor shortfall,” president Joe Biden said last month. “Congress has authorized a bill but they need $37 billion to make sure that we have this capacity. I’ll push for that as well.”