Volkswagen has closed all its car manufacturing plants in West Germany for a week because of a build-up of stocks and a drop in demand at home and overseas.
GTV & GV VW works (4 shots)
GV PAN VW cars in compound (4 shots)
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CU & GV INT. PAN VW car parts (4 shots)
GV VW Cars on production lines (5 shots)
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Background: Volkswagen has closed all its car manufacturing plants in West Germany for a week because of a build-up of stocks and a drop in demand at home and overseas. This is reportedly the first time in the company's history that the plants have been shut. On Tuesday (4 January) the factory at Wolfsburg was closed and the assembly lines had stopped.
Although the commercial vehicle works will continue as normal, the closures will affect some 100,000 men and will cut the daily vehicle output from an average of 6,500 to about 1,000.
The company blames the international currency crisis and suggests that foreign manufactures were able to gain ground in the West German market as a result of the de facto revaluation of the Mark. Some car industry experts have suggested, however, that a reason for the company's current situation is an outdated range of care facing stiff foreign and domestic competition.
SYNOPSIS: The Volkswagen factory in Wolfsburg... closed for what's said to be the first time in its history. On Tuesday, the assembly lines were quiet and the only cars to be seen were production models. The company has closed all of its car manufacturing plants in West Germany for a week. They're doing it because of a build-up of stocks and a fall in demand both at home and overseas. With only the commercial vehicle plant still operating, the temporary closure will affect some 100,000 men. The normal daily average output will be cut from 6,500 to 1,000 cars. (PAUSE ONE SECOND) The company's plants have already been closed for two of the last three weeks because of an engineering dispute and the seasonal holidays.
The company blames the international currency crisis and suggests that foreign manufacturers have gained ground in the West German market as a result of the de facto revaluation of the Mark.
Volkswagen also says the Americans' import surcharge added to their difficulties. But some car industry experts have said that Volkswagen's main problem is an outdated model range facing stiff competition. The company's chief executive officer has said that if demand doesn't increase soon, they'll have to speed-up the introduction of planned new models. With a year of industrial disputes widely forecast, Volkswagen's -- and the country's -- problems may not yet be over.