Car production in Portugal fell 46.1 percent in March compared to the same month of 2019, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Lusa News Agency on Tuesday.
"The COVID-19 pandemic led to major disruptions in supply chains, distribution channels, availability of labor and continued activity by suppliers, which resulted in the progressive and inevitable closure of automotive production units operating in Portugal from the end of March," the Automobile Association of Portugal (ACAP) said in a statement, quoted by Lusa.
According to ACAP, 13,686 light passenger vehicles were produced in March, 47.1 percent less than in the same month of the previous year.
In the first quarter, there was a drop of 18.3 percent in automobile production in Portugal, with declines of 20.5 percent, 4.5 percent and 36.4 percent in the production of passenger cars, light commercial vehicles and heavy vehicles, respectively.
Of the total vehicles manufactured in Portugal until March, 98.1 percent were destined for foreign market, with Europe absorbing 97.5 percent of exports.
In addition, more than 80 percent of companies remained in production or in operation last week, even if partially, according to the survey by the National Statistics Institute (INE) and Banco de Portugal released on Tuesday.
"The results of the first survey week (week from April 6 to 10), indicate that 82 percent of the companies remained in production or in operation, even if partially, 16 percent were temporarily closed, while 2 percent indicated that they had definitively closed," said the survey, quoted by Lusa.
In sectorial terms, accommodation and catering is the sector under the greatest impacts of the pandemic, with the highest percentage of companies closed temporarily (55 percent) and definitely (7 percent).