Japanese auto major Mazda Motor Corporation will extend the production suspension at its Hiroshima and Hofu plants until March 20 following Friday's earthquake. Previously, operations were scheduled to be suspended from the night shift on March 14 through to the night shift on March 16, the carmaker said in a statement.

Mazda places the highest priority on ensuring the safety and wellbeing of its suppliers, their employees and their families, in the affected region, the carmaker was quoted as saying.

Mazda will announce any further production changes for March 21 onward as soon as a decision is made, it added.

On March 11, a powerful earthquake struck Japan's Pacific Coast triggering off a devastating tsunami. The country now scrambles to contain nuclear threats.