Japanese earthquake and tsunami causes fall in exports

About 46% of Toyota vehicles made in Japan were shipped for export last year. Nissan exported more than half its Japan car production and Honda about 30%.
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April 20, 2011 - PRLog -- Japan's exports fell for the first time in 16 months in March, hit by the fallout from last month's massive earthquake and tsunami, which destroyed factories and damaged ports.

Car exports especially took a beating as the disasters forced Toyota, Honda and Nissan to suspend their Japanese production due to shortages of components.[tungsten rings]

Vehicle exports, which account for 10% of Japan's total shipments, plunged 27.8% in March, the finance ministry reported on Wednesday.
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"It is very frustrating for automakers and other manufacturers," said Hiroshi Watanabe, an economist at the Daiwa Institute of Research. "Despite steady demand abroad, they simply could not make their products due to a supply crunch following the disasters."[black ceramic wedding bands his and hers]

Overall exports in March declined 2.2% to 5.87 trillion yen (£43bn), marking the first year-on-year fall in 16 months. Imports rose 11.9% to ¥5.67tn last month, the ministry said. The trade surplus for the month was ¥196.5bn, down 78.9 % from a year earlier.

The magnitude-9.0 earthquake and tsunami on 11 March, which killed about 25,000 people, destroyed many factories in north-eastern Japan, crippling production of car parts and other industrial components. The disasters also damaged ports and an airport in the region, severely hampering exports.[tungsten carbide rings]

Hajime Inoue, an economist at the Japan Research Institute, warned the fall in exports could worsen to 20-30% in the coming months.

"At least for March, some manufacturers were able to keep limited output by relying on stock. But, by now, stock will be gone, forcing companies to completely shut down production," he said.


Japan's exports to the US declined 3.4% to ¥828.7bn, the first year-on-year fall in 15 months. Asia-bound exports slipped to ¥3.4tn, marking the first fall in 17 months.[grooved tungsten rings]

Japanese exports to China edged up 3.8%, while those to the EU grew 4.3% in March.

The parts shortage after the disasters forced Toyota, the world's leading carmaker, to halt its entire production in Japan from 14-25 March. The company said the disasters caused a production loss of 260,000 cars. It has now resumed production at half normal levels.[womens tungsten rings ]

About 46% of Toyota vehicles made in Japan were shipped for export last year. Nissan exported more than half its Japan car production and Honda about 30%.

Nissan shut down all Japanese output for three days after 11 March, while Honda halted operations at all its factories in Japan from 14 March to 10 April.

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