Stellantis output in Italy to fall in 2022 for a fifth year, union says

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MILAN — Carmaker Stellantis is expected to see its vehicle production in Italy fall for a fifth year in a row in 2022, mainly due to stoppages caused by a prolonged crunch in chip supply, the FIM-CISL union said on Friday.

Based on data for the first nine months of the year, FIM-CISL estimates Stellantis, the owner of brands including Fiat, will produce fewer than 650,000 vehicles by the end of the year in its Italian plants, down from 673,574 in 2021.

That would mean a shortfall of around 200,000 units compared to potential generated by orders already booked, the union said in its quarterly report on Stellantis production in the country.

Ferdinando Uliano, FIM-CISL head for automotive, said the chip shortage was the main reason for the production drop but problems were also occurring with other parts, without giving further details.

The chip problem “will also affect 2023,” Uliano said, presenting the report.

“The war in Ukraine, the halt to Russian gas supplies … can only further worsen the problem of the procurement and costs of raw materials,” he added.

A total of 235 working days were lost between January and September due to production stoppages according to the report.

“We have not yet recovered to pre-pandemic levels,” Uliano said.

In the first nine months of 2022 Stellantis production in Italy fell 2.4% year on year to 515,380 vehicles, FIM-CISL said. That was a slightly smaller drop than in the first half, when disruptions in the transport industry also hit output.

Production of light commercial vehicles at Stellantis’ Sevel plant in central Italy — Europe’s largest van assembly facility — fell 27.5% year on year.

Car production, however, rose 14.1% in the same period, helped by the new Alfa Romeo Tonale and Maserati Grecale models, production of which started in the Pomigliano and Cassino plants at the end of the second quarter.

(Reporting by Giulio Piovaccari; Editing by Keith Weir)

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