Toyota Motor Corp, now the biggest automaker in the world, may cut its vehicle production in Japan about 60 percent in the month of April due to slumping demand for cars, reported Reuters quoting the Tokyo Shimbun newspaper.
The production cut is estimated to be between 145,000 and 148,000 units, according to the Japanese newspaper but a spokesman for Toyota told Reuters the production levels for April have not yet been decided.
After the news, speculation rose that the company will be forced to reduce its domestic workforce. The Japanese newspaper estimated that if the company decides to keep April levels of production for the rest of the year, the year's production will drop to 1.8 million cars, far from Toyota's usual production of 3 million which would keep all of its permanent workforce employed.
This week Nikkei reported Toyota Motor Corp. may cut more than 1,000 full time employees in the United Kingdom and North America, citing an anonymous senior company official.
In Japan, the company has announced it plans to shut all its domestic factories for a combined 14 days between January and March and cut work to a single shift at 17 assembly lines, out of 75 worldwide at different times from January and February, Reuters noted.