Tata Motors plant in fifth block closure of truck unit

Persisting weak demand has forced Tata Motors take a three-day block closure at its heavy and medium commercial vehicles plant here between January 14 and 16, making it the fifth plant closure this fiscal. The plant has so far seen a total of 16 days' block closures in the current year, the last one for six days from December 25 to 31.

In a notice put up at the company's plant here, Tata Motors said that it will go for a block closure for three days starting January 14. The plant will resume production on January 17.

It is believed that the shutdown is being done to ensure that supply of trucks matches demand, and the company wants to make sure that inventories remain at current levels. "We are doing the shutdown at Jamshedpur and it is to ensure that the production is made to align with the demand. Our inventory is under control and these steps are taken to make sure that it remains under control," said a Tata Motors spokesperson.

Telco Workers' Union (TWU) sources said the unit, which had produced around 3,900 HCV/MCV chassis in December 2012 is targeting a production of around 4,000 chassis in January, which is way down from the average monthly production figure of around 9,000 in favourable times.

In April-December 2012, Tata Motors' commercial vehicles sales fell 3 per cent to 3.26 lakh units, according to the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers. The slowdown in industrial activity, especially in the mining sector, led to a 26 per cent fall in Tata Motors' M&HCV segment. In this segment, Tata Motors sold 1.09 lakh units in April-December 2012 as against 1.47 lakh units sold during the same period last year. FE

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