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Pakistan's Honda Atlas extends production shutdown to mid-April

FILE PHOTO: The Honda logo is displayed at the 89th Geneva International Motor Show

By Ariba Shahid

KARACHI, Pakistan (Reuters) - Honda Atlas Cars Pakistan Ltd on Friday announced a 15-day extension to the longest plant shutdown to date, citing the country's current economic crisis, restrictions on opening letters of credit for imports, and halting foreign payments.

The company announced an initial shutdown on March 8, which was expected to end on March 31.

Honda says that economic challenges in Pakistan have impacted its supply chain.

“As a result, the Company is not in a position to continue with its production and ultimately has continued to shut down its plant from April 01, 2023 to April 15, 2023,” the company, a unit of Japan's Honda Motor Co Ltd, said in a notice to the Pakistan Stock Exchange.

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Other listed-automakers, such as Indus Motor Company Limited and Pak Suzuki Motor Company, have also been forced to halt production for the last three quarters due to Pakistan's economic difficulties, which have seen central bank foreign exchange reserves drop to a level barely able to cover four weeks of imports.

(Reporting by Ariba Shahid in Karachi; Editing by Sonia Cheema)