Ferrari to close plants in Italy for two weeks in coronavirus response
MILAN (Reuters) - Luxury carmaker Ferrari <RACE.MI> said on Saturday it closed its two plants until March 27 in a response to the coronavirus outbreak in Italy and an emerging shortage of parts.
Ferrari adds to a string of Italian manufacturers which have closed plants or slowed production rates in response to the virus emergency, threatening to disrupt Europe's struggling automotive industry.
Ferrari said in a statement it had so far ensured production continuity, as it already implemented all the health measures decided by the Italian government at the two sites, located in hometown Maranello and in Modena, in the northern Emilia Romagna region.
However it added the company was "now experiencing the first serious supply chain issues, which no longer allow for continued production".
Premium brakes maker Brembo <BRBI.MI>, whose clients include Ferrari, said on Friday it would temporarily close its four Italian plants next week.
All non manufacturing activity will continue regularly, through smart working, Ferrari said.
A source close to the matter said the company will adopt further measures during the closures period, including sanitisation of the sites' areas and added that no contagion cases were recorded among Ferrari's workers to date.
Italy agreed a series of measures on Saturday to improve health controls in factories, offices and other workplaces that have been allowed to stay open during the country's coronavirus lockdown.
Ferrari's workers will continue to receive their full salary and will not be requested to use their day-off allowance during the closure period, the source said.
Chief Executive Louis Camilleri said Ferrari took the decision to close its plants out of respect for its workers, "for their peace of mind and those of their families".
Earlier this week car maker Fiat Chrysler <FCHA.MI> and industrial vehicle maker CNH Industrial <CNHI.MI> said they were temporarily halting operations and slowing production rates at some of their Italian plants to comply with government's anti-coronavirus requirements.
Tyremaker Pirelli <PIRC.MI> said it was cutting production at its Settimo Torinese plant, near Turin, after a worker tested positive for the coronavirus.
Ferrari said its Formula One team Scuderia Ferrari had also suspended its operational activities.
(Reporting by Giulio Piovaccari; editing by James Mackenzie)