Tesla to Suspend Production at Giga Shanghai Due to COVID-19 Lockdown: Report

Tesla will suspend production at its Gigafactory in Shanghai for five days, from Monday, March 28, to Friday, April 1, due to a full COVID-19 lockdown being imposed by the local government to curb China’s largest COVID-19 outbreak in two years (via @JayinShanghai).

“A full lockdown will be imposed on Shanghai’s Pudong and Puxi in turn for a new round of citywide nucleic acid testing from Monday morning, the city government announced on Sunday night.” (via @shanghaidaily).

The local government will conduct citywide nucleic acid testing during the lockdown period.  “The measure aims to curb the spread of COVID-19, protect people’s life safety and health as well as achieve the dynamic zero-COVID-19 target at the social level as soon as possible,” Shanghai’s coronavirus prevention work leaders’ office said as it announced the lockdown.

According to Bloomberg, unnamed sources say production will be suspended for at least one day, starting on Monday. Workers have not been notified of the impending shutdown yet, or whether the closure would be extended beyond Monday.

This isn’t the first time the COVID-19 outbreak in China has affected production at Giga Shanghai. Tesla was forced to pause production for two days last week, with operations resuming on March 17.

Gigafactory Shanghai produces electric vehicles (EVs) not only for the Chinese market but also for export to Europe and other parts of Asia. Giga Shanghai produced 59,845 units in January, and 56,515 cars in February.

Shanghai is a key export hub for Tesla, but the impact of the factory closure may be minimized by Giga Berlin having gone online earlier this week.

When Tesla was forced to pause production last week, the electric vehicle (EV) maker asked suppliers to prepare workers to live, sleep, and eat at the factories so production could be resumed in an arrangement similar to China’s “closed-loop management” process.

Unfortunately, the government has announced a full lockdown this time around and such an arrangement might not be possible.